During the Gold Rush, people paid exorbitant prices for ordinary objects. Why? Because of the laws of supply and demand, that's why! In the lesson, students will see how these laws fit into this great historical time.
When Henry Ford announced he was going to produce an automobile that would be affordable to the masses, it is doubtful even he realized the far reaching impact such an achievement would have on life in the U.S. and eventually, the world. Ford’s use of mass production strategies to manufacture the Model T revolutionized industrial manufacturing and initiated a new era in personal transportation. This 3-part learning unit provides students with the story of Henry Ford and the Model T from an economics perspective. Parts 1 and 2 explore how the Ford Motor Company successfully introduced mass production strategies to the auto industry. Students learn how specialization and investments in capital (machines, people, etc.) increased productivity and allowed Ford to slash the price of his popular vehicle. Students chart a plan for the assembly line production of bookmarks, test their plan and make recommendations for improvements. Students also explore how Henry Ford used economic incentives to address a problem created by mass production techniques—worker turnover. An optional Part 3 explains how increased productivity resulted in shifts in the supply and demand for the Model T. Students analyze how a variety of non price determinants continue to influence the automobile market today. A wealth of extension activities is provided if additional time is available.
The concepts of supply and demand and related terms are taught through stories about the toy fads of Hula Hoops and Silly Bandz. In 1958, Wham-O, Inc. began marketing the Hula Hoop in the United States and sales of the Hula Hoops sky-rocketed as over 25 million were sold in the first few months, within the year over 100 million. Similarly today, Silly Bandz has taken off in sales since the summer of 2008.
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.
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.
5 out of 23 lessons from this publication relate to this EconEdLink lesson.
Designed primarily for elementary and middle school students, each of the 15 lessons in this guide introduces an economics concept through activities with modeling clay.
4 out of 17 lessons from this publication relate to this EconEdLink lesson.
This publication helps elementary students analyze energy and environment issues from an economics perspective.
4 out of 10 lessons from this publication relate to this EconEdLink lesson.