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Calendar Item: Social Security Gets A Boost on May 9, 1977

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

What Is Money? Why Does It Have Value?

In this lesson, students consider the fact that the value of money differs depending on where the money is being spent. In order to understand this idea, students will first develop a deeper understanding of what it means for money to have a value. They will then consider that different goods and services cost different amounts of money in different regions of the world. Finally, students develop an understanding that the value of a dollar is determined by where the dollar is spent.

Grades: 6-8
Published: 11/26/2008

Believe it or Not?

Advertisements can tell consumers about prices and other information that may help them in the decisions they make about what to buy. But students also should know that ads are slanted by sellers to show a product in the best light. This lesson reveals to students how advertisers use words and images to make goods and services look their best. To protect consumers and make sure that competition among sellers is fair in the marketplace, the federal government requires that factual claims in ads be backed up with proof. Still, it is usually okay for sellers to talk only about the positives and ignore the negatives of what they are selling. Another common trick is to use exaggerated claims called “puffery.” It is up to the consumers to separate factual claims from opinions and exaggerations. This lesson challenges students to create a set of tips that could help consumers to make this distinction. Being able to tell the difference between factual claims and puffery or opinions can help consumers to make smart choices and avoid market disappointments.

Grades: 6-8
Published: 03/03/2006

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.