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Related Lessons

Calendar Item: The Origins Of Trust Busting on May 14, 1884


What Happened to Railroads?

Between the Civil War and World War II, railroads were one of the nation's most important businesses and an integral part of people’s lives. In this lesson, students assume the role of detectives investigating why the rail companies experienced a crisis in the 1960s and what helped the freight transport portion of the business return to profitability later in the same century. Students analyze a set of clues that help them explore the impact of government policies and changes in consumer demand on rail service. They discover that government policies (e.g., regulations, subsidies, and taxes) can have both positive and negative consequences in the marketplace. An interactive activity helps students understand that rail service competes in two different markets—passenger service and hauling freight. Students also learn that railroads and government policies have had to adjust as the transportation industry changed in the second half of the twentieth century.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 06/07/2007

Why do we need money? Think about Ebay!

The students investigate money--its purpose and functions. They complete an exercise, using the online acution site Ebay, to learn why money is critical to an economy.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 01/12/2006

Money is What Money Does

Throughout history, a wide variety of items have served as money. These include gold, silver, large stone wheels, tobacco, beer, dog teeth, porpoise teeth, cattle, metal coins, paper bills, and checks. All of these types of money should be judged on how well they accomplish the functions of money. Money is what money does. To be a good medium of exchange, money must be accepted by people when buying and selling their productive resources and when buying and selling goods and services. It should be portable or easily carried from place to place. It also must be divisible so that large and small transactions can be made. To be a good store of value, money must be durable so it can be kept for future use. It also should have a stable value so people do not lose purchasing power if they use the money at a later time. To be a good standard of value or unit of account, money must be useful for quoting prices. To accomplish this, money must be familiar, divisible, and acceptable.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 02/12/1999

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

6 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

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

Risky Business DVD

Use this DVD program to show students how to live healthy, wealthy and risk-free.

Grades: 9-12
Published: 2007

3 out of 12 lessons from this publication relate to this EconEdLink lesson.