Wednesday, May 23, 2012


Heather at The Meek Moose is one of my teammates, and thank goodness for that because I am out of steam this year and she saved me from 4 weeks of Economics Hell. Go check out her blog for info on how she planned out the unit.

We started the week by reviewing the difference between wants and needs. After that we read the book Roxaboxen by Alice McClerran and talked and what a town needs to function properly. We discussed that a town needs more than just the things that meet our basic personal needs (food, clothing, shelter, water) but also needs systems that create order and keep everyone safe, healthy, and relatively happy.The kids made lists and I copied each suggestion onto index cards. Today we looked at all the cards and sorted them into categories. After discussion, we named and defined each category in terms of Goods and/or Services. Our categories were:

  • Entertainment - SERVICES that provide you with fun
  • Shopping - Places where townspeople can buy GOODS
  • Food - this one had two subcategories
    • Restaurants - Places that provide the SERVICE of cooking your meal
    • Grocery Stores/Markets - Places where townspeople can buy GOODS that are food items
  • Public Services - SERVICES that everyone in the community will use regularly (for example the power company, post office, police, schools, town hall)
  • Choice Services - SERVICES that people can choose to use, or use sparingly (for example the gym, auto mechanic, nail salon, daycare service)

We also elected a town mayor, and thankfully Jennine won. Although I'm not sure she wanted to be the mayor of Crazytown.....
Tomorrow we will elect District Representatives (one from each table group), vote on a town name, and create a town motto.


  1. Gads, your categories are better than how mine turned out. Thank Goodness you all are doing this after me and fixing it up! We'll have to write those categories down for next year- SUPER teacher year!

  2. I'm so out of steam also! And with having to be quiet for the classes that are doing SOLs, it's a crazy time!

    Other good books for Econ: Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, If you give a Pig a Pancake (wants and needs), Three little pigs (types of resources), Mike Mulligan & the Steamshovel, To Market, To Market...

    Orange County does a Market Day thing where every 2nd grade class breaks into 4 "factories" and "produces goods" (crafts). The factory workers are paid with pretend money (that we design). We all meet in a central location one day and have a market (field trip)! We take turns selling our goods and then purchasing goods from other 2nd graders. It is LOADS of work up front, but it is a ton of fun for the kids and you can almost see them making sense of it all.

    Today I helped kids make 30 CD fish, 19 monster bookmarks, a bazillion button magnets and origami boxes. :)

    1. Thanks PJ, we usually do the same sort of activity and it IS a lot of work up front. I was excited to try something new, and really liked that the kids would create and take ownership of a community based on economic concepts.