National Standards in Economics
Below are the National Standards in Economics that most closely relate to the following lesson. Switch to National Standards in Personal Finance
Lesson 20 - The Columbian Exchange
- Students will understand that: When individuals, regions, and nations specialize in what they can produce at the lowest cost and then trade with others, both production and consumption increase.
- Students will be able to use this knowledge to: Explain how they can benefit themselves and others by developing special skills and strengths.
- Students will understand that: Income for most people is determined by the market value of the productive resources they sell. What workers earn primarily depends on the market value of what they produce.
- Students will be able to use this knowledge to: Predict future earnings based on their current plans for education, training, and career options.
- Students will understand that: Voluntary exchange occurs only when all participating parties expect to gain. This is true for trade among individuals or organizations within a nation, and among individuals or organizations in different nations.
- Students will be able to use this knowledge to: Negotiate exchanges and identify the gains to themselves and others. Compare the benefits and costs of policies that alter trade barriers between nations, such as tariffs and quotas.
- 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.
- Students will understand that: Institutions evolve and are created to help individuals and groups accomplish their goals. Banks, labor unions, markets, corporations, legal systems, and not-for-profit organizations are examples of important institutions. A different kind of institution, clearly defined and enforced property rights, is essential to a market economy.
- Students will be able to use this knowledge to: Describe the roles of various economic institutions and explain the importance of property rights in a market economy.
- Students will understand that: Different methods can be used to allocate goods and services. People acting individually or collectively must choose which methods to use to allocate different kinds of goods and services.
- Students will be able to use this knowledge to: Evaluate different methods of allocating goods and services, by comparing the benefits to the costs of each method.
- Students will understand that: People usually respond predictably to positive and negative incentives.
- Students will be able to use this knowledge to: Identify incentives that affect people's behavior and explain how incentives affect their own behavior.
- Markets and Prices
- Students will understand that: Markets exist when buyers and sellers interact. This interaction determines market prices and thereby allocates scarce goods and services.
- Students will be able to use this knowledge to: Identify markets in which they have participated as a buyer and seller and describe how the interaction of all buyers and sellers influences prices. Also, predict how prices change when there is either a shortage or surplus of the product available.
- Competition and Market Structure
- Students will understand that: Competition among sellers usually lowers costs and prices, and encourages producers to produce what consumers are willing and able to buy. Competition among buyers increases prices and allocates goods and services to those people who are willing and able to pay the most for them.
- Students will be able to use this knowledge to: Explain how changes in the level of competition in different markets can affect price and output levels.
- Role of Prices
- Students will understand that: Prices send signals and provide incentives to buyers and sellers. When supply or demand changes, market prices adjust, affecting incentives.
- Students will be able to use this knowledge to: Predict how changes in factors such as consumers' tastes or producers' technology affect prices.
- Economic Growth
- Students will understand that: Investment in factories, machinery, new technology, and in the health, education, and training of people stimulates economic growth and can raise future standards of living.
- Students will be able to use this knowledge to: Predict the consequences of investment decisions made by individuals, businesses, and governments.
- Money and Inflation
- Students will understand that: Money makes it easier to trade, borrow, save, invest, and compare the value of goods and services. The amount of money in the economy affects the overall price level. Inflation is an increase in the overall price level that reduces the value of money.
- Students will be able to use this knowledge to: Explain how their lives would be more difficult in a world with no money, or in a world where money sharply lost its value.