Our state standards here in Kansas are a bit different than most other states. We focus on five big ideas rather than specific content. It’s a great idea based on research but it can be difficult at times for our teachers to align their instruction. And I know that many of you around the country are always on the lookout for quality Econ resources and lesson plans.
The Kansas and national Councils for Economic Education are just the thing!
A quick example. The first Kansas standard is Choices Have Consequences. (And I know that there are similar sorts of standards and benchmarks around the country.) So how might we design instruction that aligns to that?
Because scarcity exists, people must make choices. Whenever a choice is made the next best thing is given up; therefore, there is a consequence for each choice. In the world of economics, that consequence is called the opportunity cost. The world is full of economics and it is important to help students understand their world they live in is incredibly full of economics. And waiting until after high school to learn economics is much too late.
The National Council for Economic Education makes this clear:
A thorough understanding of economics will contribute not only to their personal success, but to the successes of the businesses, institutions and governments in which they participate.
Teachers from kindergarten through twelfth grade can easily help students learn to make better choices, understand the impact of their choices, and understand the impact of historical choices. Integrating economics into topics currently being taught in social studies classrooms is especially important. There are many great lessons ready to go that can be integrated into your existing curriculum – even if the teacher doesn’t have a strong background in economics.
EconEdLink is just the thing for you. It is free and easy to use. And with a FREE account, teachers have full access to some portions of the site. At EconEdLink, you are able to search for lesson plans and resources by grade level, concept, subject area and more. Need some great examples of what you can find?
- No Extra Room on the Mayflower (K-2)
- The Trading Game (6-12)
- The South’s Decisions to Secede: A Violation of Self (6-12)
- Is Globalization a Dirty Word? (9-12)
- Trouble is Brewing in Boston – “Colonial Voices: Hear them Speak” (K-5)
- Let’s Find a Deal – How the Crusades Led to the Finding of the New World (6-8)
- The Economics of Voting (9-12)
- Toys for Me: A Lesson on Choice (K-5)
- The Civil War: A War of Resources (6-8)
- What Happened to Railroads? (9-12)
- Booker T. Washington: “Fifty Cents and a Dream” (K-5)
- The Economics of the New Deal (9-12)
- I Have No Money, Would You Take Wampum? (3-5)
- Immigration (9-12)
- Uncle Jed’s Barbershop (3-5)
- Who Decides Wage Rates (9-12)
These are just a few of the lessons you will find on EconEdLink. You can also find concept videos and interactive activities.
Trying to find econ connections to the fall elections?
High school teachers will also find some new lessons for election economics along with an option to participate in free webinars for teachers interested in using lessons or just learning more. There are three webinars remaining:
- Immigration: Wednesday, Sept. 14th from 3-4 pm
- Money and Elections: Wednesday, Sept. 21st from 3-4 pm
- Economic Misery and Presidential Elections:, Sept. 28th from 3-4 pm
Want more information?
The Kansas Council for Economic Education (KCEE) is a non-profit education organization that was created to help all Kansas K-12 teachers with assessments, lessons plans, activities and competitions for integrating economics. KCEE is affiliated with an amazing national network of economic education specialists, the Council for Economic Education, and the Centers for Economics Education in most major Universities. That network gives Kansas teachers access to many wonderful books of lesson plans created for social studies teachers outside of things you will find on EconEdLink.org. Looking for something specific or help in your district? Please contact KCEE at KCEE@wichita.edu or call 316-978-5183.
Interested in professional development in economics or want more free resources?
The KCEE and the six Kansas Centers for Economic Education offer lots of opportunities for professional development and ways to receive free resources for Kansas teachers. KCEE also partners with other organizations to help encourage economics in Kansas schools. Like the KCEE Facebook page @KCEE1959 and follow them on Twitter @KSecon to keep up with resources and trainings specific for Kansas teachers.
So you’re not teaching in Kansas?
No problem. Head over to the CEE site to find links to every state affiliate around the country
Vice President for Programs & Admin
Kansas Council for Economic Education