President George W. Bush greets fourth graders, January 5, 2004, at Pierre Laclede Elementary School in St. Louis, Missouri. (P36885-10)
Education

Second Grade

Basic Economy Introduction Lesson & Activities

An Economy is made up of methods, procedures, and routines connected together to make and trade things of value. An Economy is a system consisting of physical things and things done by people. When children learn the concepts such as trading, buyers, sellers, and barters it opens their understanding of economy. This also introduces them to the importance of trade and exchange in their community with money and without money. These simple activities listed below allow second grade students to look at their local, state, and federal economies and identify examples of how these systems help their communities:

  • Reading books about money, use of money, ways to make money. 
  • Vocabulary Words (Use these words for teachable moments, have students make flashcards, or a Basic Economy book using words):
    • Factory
    • Trade
    • Transportation
    • Barter
    • Producer
    • Consumer
    • Income
    • Scarcity
    • Economy
    • Services
    • Supply
  • Guide students in a discussion about items they buy. Make a chart of discussion.
  • Guide students in a discussion about work that is done for them or work they do for others. Make a chart of discussion.
  • On their own have students draw a Venn diagram comparing and contrasting items bought and work done.
  • Make a chart defining trade, bartering, and buying.   
  • Have students play Market with items in the classroom by trading through bartering and buying.

Goods & Services Lesson & Activities

Goods and Services are a major part of an economy. Goods and Services are a major part of our community. When students learn the difference between something made or used to satisfy needs and wants vs. some action/deed done to satisfy needs and wants, they will begin to understand the importance of goods and services. When children learn these concepts it broadens their knowledge of economics. Use the activities listed below to help second graders understand the concrete idea of goods and the abstract idea of services:

  • Read books about getting needs and wants satisfied.
  • Vocabulary Words (Use these words for teachable moments. Have students make flashcards using words):
    • Profit
    • Loss
    • Taxes
    • Entrepreneur
    • Resources
    • Satisfied
    • Currency
    • Trade
    • Money
    • Debt
    • Cash Crop
    • Credit
  • Define and guide students in a discussion about goods. Make a chart of discussion.
  • Define and guide students in a discussion about services. Make a chart of discussion.
  • Have students make a list of ways to earn money using Goods & Services.
  • Using magazines have students cut out and paste pictures representing goods and services on a piece of construction paper.
  • Define and guide students in a discussion about needs vs. wants. Make a chart of discussion.
  • As a class make a Venn diagram to show all possible relationships between needs, wants, goods, and services.

Producers & Consumers Lesson & Activities

Every person in the world at one time or another will be a Producer or a Consumer. Producers make goods and/or provide services. Consumers buy and/or use goods and services. Teaching the concepts of producers and consumers will help students better understand economics. The activities below will help second graders develop a global community view of how people depend on each other for their needs and wants:

  • Read books about needs and wants of different cultures around the world.
  • Vocabulary Words (Use these words for teachable moments, have students make flashcards, or Producers/Consumers book using words):
    • Bank
    • Need
    • Want
    • Exchange
    • Capital
    • Charity
    • Business
    • Circulation
    • Distribution
    • Donation
    • Inflation
    • Surplus
    • Shortage
  • Have second graders explore different ways to make goods, provide services, buy or use goods and services.
  • Guide students in a discussion about producers and consumers around the world. Then make a chart of your discussion in the form of a flat map showing placement of producers and consumer on countries and other global landforms.
  • Have second grade students write a story and paint a picture about producers and consumers working together.
  • Have students search internet for global producer and consumers in action and print what they find. 

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