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Calendar Item: A "Steal" Of A Deal on April 30, 1803

Work, Earnings and Economics: Using 'Lyddie' by Katherine Paterson

To get started, the students will read Lyddie, a novel by Katherine Paterson. The novel is set mainly in Lowell, Massachusetts, in the 1840s. In Lowell the main character, 13-year-old Lyddie Worthen, works six days a week, from dawn until dusk, running weaving looms in a murky dust-and lintfilled factory, trying to save enough money to reunite her family. In reading and discussing this fine novel, the students examine basic economic concepts and explore the growth of labor unions and the role of government in a market economy. Lyddie is published by Puffin Books and is available at It is also available in DVD video format and may be purchased on line at Circuit City, DVD and

Grades: 6-8
Published: 09/13/2007

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner

This lesson introduces regulation and information as two tools used by government to promote fair competition and complete information in a market economy. Using the 1906 Pure Food and Drugs Act as a case study, students explore the reasons buyers and sellers asked the federal government to intervene with respect to food safety and quality. In a second activity, students examine how government has improved consumer access to food and nutrition information, more specifically, how government requires sellers to provide accurate, standardized information and how it provides information directly through federal agencies. Students then use this information to make a choice between two food products.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 02/20/2004

Be an Energy Saver

This lesson focuses on the scarce and nonrenewable nature of fossil fuels in order to stimulate student thinking about energy conservation. It emphasizes the fact that saving energy can be good for the wallet as well as the earth's future. Students play a memory game that challenges them to find people-powered substitutes for things that use electricity and gas. Students then use the federally-mandated EnergyGuide labels to estimate the cost savings of energy- efficient home appliances. In a final activity, students explore positive and negative economic incentives that motivate people to conserve energy. Many federal energy-related programs and policies are featured in this lesson. These include, besides the Energy Guide label, EnergyStar certification, the Fuel Economy Guide for motor vehicles, and a diverse collection of taxes, tax breaks and subsidies. In this lesson, students examine options for reducing their dependence on energy resources, especially by substituting people power for other forms of energy and purchasing energy efficient home appliances. Students also explore some of the government programs that are influencing consumer choices in the marketplace.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 03/11/2004

Related Publications

The following lessons come from the Council for Economic Education's library of publications. Clicking the publication title or image will take you to the Council for Economic Education Store for more detailed information.

Focus: Middle School World History

Focus: Understanding Economics in U.S. History uses a unique mystery-solving approach to teach U.S. economic history to your high school students.

Grades: 5-8
Published: 2011

24 out of 24 lessons from this publication relate to this EconEdLink lesson.

Learning, Earning and Investing: High School

This publication contains 23 lessons that introduce high school students to the world of investing--its benefits and risks and the critical role it plays in fostering capital formation and job creation in our free market system.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 2004

23 out of 23 lessons from this publication relate to this EconEdLink lesson.

Financial Fitness for Life: Grades 6-8 - Teacher Guide

This publication contains 17 lessons that complement the 6-8 Student Workbook. Specific to grades 6-8 are a variety of activities, including developing criteria that students think would make a good graham cracker and taste-testing to determine which graham cracker meets their needs; deciding which activities are better suited to careers or hobbies; and learning how important planning is to the success of any goal or event.

Grades: 3-5
Published: 2010

19 out of 19 lessons from this publication relate to this EconEdLink lesson.