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.
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.
This lesson explores the relationship of unemployment to inflation in the 1960s and after. Students will discover the short-run trade-off between inflation and unemployment when unemployment is less than its natural rate. Students will learn how wage setters formed adaptive expectations about future inflation and included these in their wage demands. At the conclusion of this lesson, students will be able to graph and analyze the effects of a policy to hold unemployment below its natural rate. The goal is for students to see the link between the Phillips Curve and the short-run aggregate supply curve.
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Focus: Understanding Economics in U.S. History uses a unique mystery-solving approach to teach U.S. economic history to your high school students.
8 out of 40 lessons from this publication relate to this EconEdLink lesson.
Teaching Financial Crises is an eight lesson resource that provides an organizing framework in which to contextualize all of the media attention that has been paid to the recent financial crisis, as well as put it in a historical context. The current events stories, opinion pieces, and other popular media pieces that are today in great supply have generally not connected to educational objectives, historical analysis, and economic processes and concepts that are used in the high school classroom. In Teaching Financial Crises, teachers will find a non-partisan and non-ideological resource to help them simplify and offer balanced perspectives on this challenging subject matter.
5 out of 9 lessons from this publication relate to this EconEdLink lesson.
This publication helps students analyze energy and environment issues from an economics perspective.
6 out of 10 lessons from this publication relate to this EconEdLink lesson.