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[Channel-talkeconomics] Economic Mystery approach

From: Alicia Ross <aliciar@echoes.net>
Date: Sat Jul 15 2006 - 11:14:24 EDT
X-Mailer: Microsoft Outlook Express 6.00.2900.2869

4. Discuss the mystery approach to teaching economics. Discuss the elements of creating your own mystery. Some things to consider are clipping news articles that seem odd, developing a primary proposition, developing an opposing proposition, writing the mystery, exploring students' questions and misconceptions about economics, and focusing on the economic principles that explain the mystery.


I have and use frequently the Economic Mysteries lesson plan book from NCEE. It is great for students to use deductive reasoning. I also think students love a good word or logic puzzle and this taps into the fun that kids have when trying to figure things out. They also know that economic reasoning is going to necessary to solve the mystery and that creates great opportunities for application of concepts or maybe even discovering that you applied some concept that you hadn't even formally learned yet as part of an introductory lesson.


I am working on using an article from the news this past week. There was a man who initially traded a red paper clip on ebay for something and then traded what he got for something, and so on until he ended up with a house! The story really illustrates voluntary exchange.I also think I can use this when I cover Money as more efficient in trade than bartering. I think I will frame it as the mystery of how you can trade a red paper clip for a house. Some students may have heard the story but everyone will benefit from considering voluntary exchange and that the house would not have been possible unless in each and every exchange made, both parties were better off. Like so many teachers in the workshops have remarked, students learn better if you can make lessons memorable.


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Received on Sat Jul 15 11:18:43 2006



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