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Calendar Item: Coal Miner's Stike on May 12, 1902


Henry Ford and the Model T: A Case Study in Productivity (Part 3)

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.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 01/15/2008

Focus on Economic Data: U.S. Employment and the Unemployment Rate, March, 2013

This lesson examines the April 5, 2013, U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, announcement of U.S. employment data and the unemployment rate for the month of March, 2013. This lesson introduces the basic concepts of the BLS employment and unemployment data. The meaning and importance of the data are discussed. Assessment exercises are included for reinforcing knowledge of the concepts.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 05/10/2013

Wages and Me

Students explore the reasons for differences in the wages for several occupations. Then students are guided through the Bureau of Labor Statistics website to find information about their potential careers and wage rates nationally and in their own states.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 04/24/2002

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: Understanding Economics in U.S. 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: 9-12
Published: 2006

15 out of 40 lessons from this publication relate to this EconEdLink lesson.

Capstone: Exemplary Lessons for High School Economics - Teacher's Guide

This publication contains complete instructions for teaching the lessons in Capstone. When combined with a textbook, Capstone provides activities for a complete high school economics course. 45 exemplary lessons help students learn to apply economic reasoning to a wide range of real-world subjects.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 2003

8 out of 45 lessons from this publication relate to this EconEdLink lesson.

Focus: High School Economics

This revised edition features simulations, role plays, small-group discussions and other active-learning instructional activities to help students explore economic concepts through real-life applications.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 2001

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