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Lesson: What Do You Get for Your $1,818,600,000,000?


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 of the economy and businesses to their own devices. But once the Great Depression began the nation needed help, FAST! The stock market was in shambles. Many banks closed. Farmers fell into bankruptcy and were forced off their land. Twenty-five percent of the work force, or 13 million people, were unemployed in 1932. In 1933, the Roosevelt Administration addressed the problem by making the government a key player in the nation’s economy. Using his New Deal as a force for reform, President Roosevelt created policies, agencies and standards to help alleviate serious problems. The reforms provided America with an economy that has been relatively stable for almost 80 years. Students will be prompted to think about the different programs and policies the New Deal created and how they are relevant to the role of government, and fiscal, and monetary policy, both then and now.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 06/20/2005

Focus on Economic Data: U.S. Real GDP Growth, March 27, 2015

In this lesson, students explore the advance estimate of real GDP data for the fourth quarter of 2014. These data, released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, are presented first as estimates, then as revisions as more data for the time period is collected. This lesson uses data from the final estimate of the 4Q 2014 activity. Students will understand the recent trends in real GDP, the role of exports and imports, and the effect of trade balance on GDP and GDP growth.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 04/20/2015

Focus on Economic Data: U.S. Real GDP Growth, January 30, 2015

In this lesson, students explore the advance estimate of real GDP data for the fourth quarter of 2014. These data, released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, are presented first as estimates, then as revisions as more data for the time period is collected. This lesson uses data from the initial estimate of the 4Q 2014 activity. Students will understand the recent trends in real GDP, as well as explore alternative ways to measure a country's well-being. 

Grades: 9-12
Published: 02/13/2015

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.


Energy, Economics, and the Environment: Case Studies and Teaching Activities for High School

This publication helps students analyze energy and environment issues from an economics perspective.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 2006

6 out of 10 lessons from this publication relate to this EconEdLink lesson.

Focus: Understanding Economics in Civics and Government

This publication contains 20 lessons designed to provide an economic insight into topics typically covered in may civics and government classes.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 2009

5 out of 21 lessons from this publication relate to this EconEdLink lesson.