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Virtual Economics


Lesson 20: Aggregate Supply and Demand: The Sum of Their Parts, and More
Focus: High School Economics
Over the last two decades, the most dramatic pedagogical innovation in teaching introductory economics has been the use of aggregate supply and demand curves to illustrate key macroeconomic concepts and policy issues. There is still some debate about this development among university economists, but because these curves look and operate so much like the standard supply and demand curves featured ...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Aggregate demand, Aggregate supply, Gross domestic product, Fiscal policy, Monetary policy,

Unit 6: Lesson 38 - Aggregate Demand and Aggregate Supply
Capstone: Exemplary Lessons for High School Economics - Teacher's Guide
Students build their understanding of aggregate demand and aggregate supply. They use their new skills to analyze the effects of events and government monetary and fiscal policies on inflation, unemployment, and economic growth. In the first two Activities, students identify different components of AD and AS and the factors that shift AD and AS. In the last two Activities, students use AD and A...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Aggregate demand and shifting, Aggregate supply and shifting, Fiscal policy, Macroeconomic equilibrium, Monetary policy, Price level, Real gross domestic product

Lesson 18: Economic Ups and Downs
Focus: High School Economics
News reports about the economy often refer to data concerning economic growth, recessions, inflation, and unemployment. Students (and adults) should understand these data and how they both reflect and affect peoples' and companies' decisions to buy, save, invest, and produce. These data or measures of national economic performance have also become major topics in national elections and political...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Business cycles, Gross domestic product, Unemployment, Consumer price index, Recession, Inflation, Economic growth, Fiscal policy,

Unit 6: Lesson 37 - Can Government Manage the National Economy?
Capstone: Exemplary Lessons for High School Economics - Teacher's Guide
Although economists agree much more often than they disagree, the opinions of prominent economists on economic policy often conflict. This lesson seeks to clarify why economists disagree. Understanding the reasons for disagreement among experts may help students to make their own judgments about economic policies. The lesson concludes by having students compare and contrast the major macroecono...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Aggregate demand, Aggregate supply, Assumptions, Fiscal policy, Keynesian theory, Monetarist theory, Monetary policy, New Classical theory, Rational Expectations theory

Unit 3: Lesson 6 - How Can Changes in the Federal Government's Budget Stabilize the Economy?
Civics and Government: Focus on Economics
The teacher discusses with the class how a market economy like that of the United States goes through the Business Cycle of unstable swings in economic activity. The students then write and perform a three-act skit which illustrates how the level of income and spending in an economy can fall, and how intentional fiscal policy changes in the spending and taxing levels of government result in a mul...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Income-spending chain, Multiplier effects, Business cycle, Unemployment, Inflation, Fiscal policy,

Lesson 21 - Lessons from History: Stock Market Crashes
Learning, Earning and Investing: High School
The students analyze information about the stock market crash of 1929 and the stock market crash of 1987. They use the information to make posters about the crashes, highlighting what happened during and after the crashes, causes of the crashes and the role of the Federal Reserve in each crash. After presenting their posters to the class, the students discuss similarities and differences between t...
Grade(s): 6-8, 9-12
Concepts: Causes and effects of the stock market crash of 1929, Causes and effects of the stock market crash of 1987, Federal Reserve, Monetary policy, Supply and demand

Unit 7: Lesson 2 - Where Did All the Income Go?
United States History: Eyes on the Economy - Through the 20th Century
Students discuss an economic mystery and study the definition of money. Class discussion follows a role play activity, and students identify the consequences of additional saving on income when no other changes take place in the economy.
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Income, Saving, Interdependence, Aggregate demand, Aggregate supply,

Unit 9: Lesson 2 - Why Does the Federal Government Overspend its Budget?
United States History: Eyes on the Economy - Through the 20th Century
The teacher will present a definition of "federal budget deficits" and provide a historical overview of deficits since 1960. Students will use the HDG principles to predict levels of support for different proposals to reduce the deficit.
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: National debt, Deficit, Incentives,

Macroeconomics Unit 3: Lesson 5 - Short-Run Equilibrium
Advanced Placement Economics: Teacher Resource Manual
In this lesson, the focus is on the short-run equilibrium between aggregate supply and demand, on the changes in output and price level if aggregate supply or aggregate demand changes, and on the students' ability to explain correctly why the curve shifted in a specific direction. The relationship between the simple Keynesian model and the aggregate supply-aggregate demand model is explored. Activ...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Macroeconomic equilibrium, Equilibrium price level, Aggregate demand, Aggregate supply, Keynesian model, Full employment,

Lesson 12 - Fiscal Policy: A Two-Act Play
Economics in Action: 14 Greatest Hits for Teaching High School Economics
Groups of students are given outlines for one of two acts in a play describing either expansionary or contractionary fiscal policy. After the students choose parts and prepare lines for their roles, two groups are chosen to perform the play. Students then discuss the events in the play using a Visual that defines concepts related to fiscal policy. More advanced classes may then discuss current deb...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Contractionary fiscal policy, Expansionary fiscal policy, Fiscal policy, Multiplier effects, Supply-side fiscal policy, (Optional) Crowding out

Unit 6: Lesson 35 - Fiscal Policy: A Two-Act Play
Capstone: Exemplary Lessons for High School Economics - Teacher's Guide
Groups of students are given outlines for one of two acts in a play describing either expansionary or contractionary fiscal policy. After choosing parts and preparing lines for their roles, two groups are chosen to perform the play. Events in the play are discussed by reference to concepts of fiscal policy. More advanced classes may then discuss current debates about the effectiveness of fiscal...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Contractionary fiscal policy, Crowding out (optional), Expansionary fiscal policy, Fiscal policy, Multiplier effects, Supply-side fiscal policy

Lesson 4: Klips And Kupons
Economies in Transition: Command to Market
The students participate in the Klips and Kupons simulation. During the simulation, they discover how a change in the money supply can cause changes in the price level. They formalize this discovery by relating the equation of exchange to their simulation results. Some of the consequences of inflation and hyperinflation are examined.
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Inflation, Hyperinflation, Equation of Exchange, Nominal Gross Domestic Product, Real Gross Domestic Product

Unit 7: Lesson 1 - Whatdunit? The Great Depression Mystery
United States History: Eyes on the Economy - Through the 20th Century
Students read a brief passage posing the basic question about the Great Depression: How did it happen? A brief simulation activity shows how unemployment in one part of the economy can lead to unemployment in other parts of the economy. With the aid of two visuals, the teacher discusses the reduction in the stock of money caused by bank failures from 1930 to 1933.
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Recession, Depression, Demand, Income, Multiplier, Money, Fractional reserve banking, Federal reserve system,

Macroeconomics Unit 6: Lesson 4 - Monetary and Fiscal Policy in a Global Economy
Advanced Placement Economics: Teacher Resource Manual
This lesson combines the knowledge of monetary and fiscal policy and the economy developed in Units 3 through 5 with the knowledge of international finance. It explains and analyzes the impact of domestic policy on the foreign exchange rate. It is essential that the students understand the interaction between the domestic economy and the international economy to understand the current policy discu...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Monetary policy, Fiscal policy, Domestic aggregate demand,

Lesson 10: Macroeconomic Stabilization Policies and Institutions
Focus: Institutions and Markets
This lesson begins by reviewing the discovery and adoption of Keynesian fiscal policies in the United States and other nations following World War II. Students then participate in several exercises to ascertain their understanding of appropriate demand-side tools of fiscal policy, which is conducted by national legislative and executive branches of government, and tools of monetary policy, which ...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Unemployment, Inflation, Fiscal policy, Automatic stabilizers, Monetary policy, Central banks, Discount rate, Reserve requirement, Open market operations,

Unit 6: Lesson 33 - Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and How to Measure It
Capstone: Exemplary Lessons for High School Economics - Teacher's Guide
Students examine GDP. They distinguish between nominal and real GDP. They study how GDP is comprised of household spending on consumption goods and services (C), business investment spending (I), government spending on goods and services (G), and net exports (X-M). They participate in a simulation in which they classify economic events into the categories C, I, G, or (X-M), and predict whether ...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Consumption, Exports, Gross domestic product (GDP), Government spending on goods and services, Imports, Investment, Net exports

Lesson 3 - Economics and Population Demographics
Middle School World Geography: Focus on Economics
In this lesson, the students use data and graphs to analyze and compare the populations and standards of living for different countries. The students begin by building a population pyramid of the children in their families over three generations. They then analyze population pyramids to describe the demographic structure of different countries' populations and to analyze the implications of these ...
Grade(s): 6-8
Concepts: Economics, Gross domestic product, Gross domestic product per capita, Standard of living, Labor productivity, Human capital, Intermediate goods

Lesson 5: Mystery Almanac
The Wide World of Trade
Working in groups, students participate in an activity to identify countries from around the world. Based on what they learn about these countries, students complete an Information Resources Chart. The goal is to have students recognize what information supplied about the countries can tell them about the countries' resource endowments and standards of living.
Grade(s): 6-8
Concepts: Productive resources, Economic system, Natural resources, Human resources, Capital goods, Human capital, Investment in human capital, Gross domestic product, Per capita gross domestic product,

Lesson 5 - Economic Freedom: How Important Is It?
Middle School World Geography: Focus on Economics
In this lesson, the students participate in activities that help them understand the correlation between economic freedom and a country's standard of living. First the students decide whether they agree or disagree with rules and laws that affect teenagers. They discuss how rules and laws affect their economic freedom and then hypothesize about how economic freedom affects a country's standard of ...
Grade(s): 6-8
Concepts: Gross domestic product, Gross domestic product per capita, Standard of living, Economic freedom

Lesson 7: Places and Production
Geography: Focus on Economics
Students calculate United States GDP and GDP per capita, use of choropleth map to acquire information, and create choropleth maps of GDP per capita in South America. They identify regions with high and low DGP per capita and suggest reasons why the well-being of people may be overestimated in countries with high GDP per capita and underestimated in countries with low GDP per capita.
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Gross Domestic Product, Choropleth Map, Measure of Value, Double Counting, Final Goods and Services, Flow of Product Approach, Earnings and Cost Approach, Consumer-Spending, Investment Spending, Government Spending, Exports, Imports, Gross Domestic Product Per Capita


online FRED and the Federal Budget Interactive Lesson
Students will use a Federal Reserve Economic Data (FRED) data dashboard to calculate budget deficits, surpluses, how much federal budgets in certain budget years added to the total public debt, and gross federal debt as percent of GDP. Using the information they have collected, students will answer questions requiring analysis and inference.
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Budget,Budget Deficit,Gross Domestic Product (GDP),Trade-off,Investment,Productivity,Budget Surplus,Consumption,Debt,Recession,Total Cost (TC),Total Revenue (TR),Revenue

online The Economics of the New Deal
The stock-market crash of 1929 is generally seen as the start of The Great Depression, the worst economic downturn in the history of the United States. The Depression had devastating effects on the country. But it also served as a wake-up call for economic reform. Until the Great Depression, the U.S. government had made very few modifications to the nation's economic policies. It left the dealings...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Role of Government,Fiscal Policy,Monetary Policy

online Phillips Curve
This lesson explores the relationship of unemployment to inflation in the 1960s and after. Students will discover the short-run trade-off between inflation and unemployment when unemployment is less than its natural rate. Students will learn how wage setters formed adaptive expectations about future inflation and included these in their wage demands. At the conclusion of this lesson, students wil...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Aggregate Demand (AD),Aggregate Supply (AS),Inflation,Price,Unemployment,Unemployment Rate,Wage

online AP Macroeconomics - Short-Run Equilibrium and Changes in AS/AD
This lesson supports the National Income and Price Determination section of the Advanced Placement Macroeconomics course. The focus of this lesson is on short-run equilibrium in the AS/AD model and the changes in real GDP and the price level if AS or AD changes. Students need to learn how to graph and explain changes in AS and AD and the resulting effects on equilibrium price level and real G...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Aggregate Demand (AD),Aggregate Supply (AS),Equilibrium Price,Real Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

online Jokes, Quotations, and Cartoons in Economics
Students will apply their knowledge of economics to the analysis and interpretation of jokes, quotations, and cartoons in economics. Students will watch a Paul Solman video of an interview of Yoram Bauman, the Stand up Economist. Students will use Daryl Cagel's cartoon website, Jokes on the Web, and news media to find economics humor and interpret.
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Budget Deficit,Business,Central Banking System,Credit,Gross Domestic Product (GDP),Incentive,Role of Government,Stock Market,Labor,Unemployment,Recession,Spend

online The Panic of 1893 and the Election of 1896
ESSENTIAL DILEMMA Were the contradictory responses political leaders had to the panic of 1893 driven more by economic/political self-interest or by differing visions of what kind of country they wanted the United States to be?
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Budget,Budget Deficit,Gross Domestic Product (GDP),Human Capital,Debt,Depression

online Economic Indicators
How do economists make their forecasts about the U.S. economy? What are the economic indicators that help forecast economic activity and business cycles? In this lesson you will be able to retrieve up-to-date, key economic statistics which will provide valuable hints about the state of the future economy.
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Consumer Economics,Gross Domestic Product (GDP),Money Supply,Price,Production,Stock Market

online Fiscal and Monetary Policy Process and Interactive Quiz
Students follow each step of fiscal and monetary policy processes, to see the logic of how these tools are used to correct economic instability.
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Aggregate Demand (AD),Demand,Government Expenditures,Government Revenues,Tools of the Federal Reserve

online AP Macroeconomics - The Deficit and the Debt
This lesson supports the Inflation, Unemployment, and Stabilization Policies section of the Advanced Placement Macroeconomics course. It introduces government budget deficits and the national debt and analyzes the long-run effects of budget deficits on the economy. This lesson appears as Lesson 3, Unit 5: Inflation, Unemployment, and Stabilization Policies in CEE's [EEL-link id='5227' title='Adva...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Budget Deficit,National Debt,Fiscal Policy,Budget Surplus

online Economic Forecasting: An Internet WebQuest
Economics is often called the "science of decision making." The decisions that economists analyze range from personal decisions such as how big a pizza to order or whether to buy or lease a new car to the decisions the federal government makes about things like the size of our military. Economists use information about these, and other decisions, to develop indicators that can b...
Grade(s): 9-12
Concepts: Decision Making,Gross Domestic Product (GDP),Inflation,Deflation,Unemployment Rate

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