Standards for Are the Best Things in Life Free?
National Standards in Economics
Name: Decision Making
- Students will understand that: Effective decision making requires comparing the additional costs of alternatives with the additional benefits. Many choices involve doing a little more or a little less of something: few choices "are all or nothing" decisions.
- Students will be able to use this knowledge to: Make effective decisions as consumers, producers, savers, investors, and citizens.
- Students will understand that: Productive resources are limited. Therefore, people cannot have all the goods and services they want; as a result, they must choose some things and give up others.
- Students will be able to use this knowledge to: Identify what they gain and what they give up when they make choices.
National Standards in Financial Literacy
Name: Earning Income
- Students will understand that: Most people earn wage and salary income in return for working, and they can also earn income from interest, dividends, rents, entrepreneurship, business profits, or increases in the value of investments. Employee compensation may also include access to employee benefits such as retirement plans and health insurance. Employers generally pay higher wages and salaries to more educated, skilled, and productive workers. The decision to invest in additional education or training can be made by weighing the benefit of increased income-earning and career potential against the opportunity costs in the form of time, effort, and money. Spendable income is lower than gross income due to taxes assessed on income by federal, state, and local governments.
- Students will understand that: People who have sufficient income can choose to save some of it for future uses such as emergencies or later purchases. Savings decisions depend on individual preferences and circumstances. Funds needed for transactions, bill-paying, or purchases, are commonly held in federally insured checking or savings accounts at financial institutions because these accounts offer easy access to their money and low risk. Interest rates, fees, and other account features vary by type of account and between financial institutions, with higher rates resulting in greater compound interest earned by savers.
- Students will understand that: A budget is a plan for allocating a person’s spendable income to necessary and desired goods and services. When there is sufficient money in their budget, people may decide to give money to others, save, or invest to achieve future goals. People can often improve their financial wellbeing by making well-informed spending decisions, which includes critical evaluation of price, quality, product information, and method of payment. Individual spending decisions may be influenced by financial constraints, personal preferences, unique needs, peers, and advertising.