Grades 3-5, 6-8
State coordinators have opened up registration for local high school competitions that lead into CEE’s National Personal Finance Challenge and National Economics Challenge! Teams of three-to-four students with one teacher/coach compete in each subject for the national titles and cash prizes! Teachers, register today!
Click here for the National Economics Challenge
Click here for the National Personal Finance Challenge
To know what Economics is about, you have to understand scarcity. Scarcity means that you always want more than you can have. Every person—-child and adult, rich and poor, U.S. citizen and non U.S. citizen—-has to deal with scarcity every minute of the day, because no one can have everything they want. You cannot have all the time you want. You cannot have every toy you want. You cannot have more of anything you want without having less of something else you want. All choices have costs. Not only do you have to make a choice because of scarcity, but the cost of making that choice means you give up the chance to get something else. This is called opportunity cost.
Therefore, the choice you make is very important. Not only do you have to make a choice, because of scarcity, but also, when you making a choice, you have to give up something.
In the story poem, Scarcity, does not understand that the world is “this OR that,” not “this AND that”. In other words, when you make a choice, you have to give up something else, which is the cost of the choice. Scarcity is limited to one toy as a gift from Mother for her birthday. Then, Scarcity is limited to one toy as a gift from Mother for Christmas. But Scarcity does not believe it is fair, or right, to have to choose. She does not want to pay the cost of having to give something up when she makes a choice. She wants every toy that she can see.
Because of scarcity, we all have to make choices. No one, not even you, can have everything they want. Every time you make a choice, you have to give up something.
Assessment Activity 1:
Identify five choices you made today preparing for school. For each choice, list the opportunity cost. (Remember, opportunity cost is the next best thing you would choose to do.)
Assessment Activity 2:
Discuss opportunities that Scarcity gave up (costs) by choosing to spend the night picking toys off of the magic tree.
There are two types of needs:
Grades 3-5, 6-8