E Unit 1 – Introduction to Economics

Content Statements Addressed

  • E CS 3, E CS 4, E CS 13
  • Four weeks of instruction

Essential Questions


Learning Targets

  • Define scarcity
  • Identify diverse trade-offs and choices
  • Distinguish between needs and wants
  • Individuals evaluate choices using opportunity cost and benefit while societies use production possibility frontiers
  • Define free market, command economy, and mixed economies
  • Identify the 3 key economic questions that all economies must answer
  • Identify the goals emphasized by American Free Enterprise
  • Distinguish between different mixed economies around the world
  • Evaluate market and command solutions to economic challenged

Learning Strategies

  • Ask students to list needs and wants.
  • Have students relate the opportunity costs and benefits of a personal decision from their own life.
  • Complete opportunity cost/benefit table.
  • Play the bag game or vacation destination.
  • Reflect on the “greed is good” speech from the movie Wall Street.
  • Construct a circular flow model of the free market economy.
  • Play the Econo Game.


  • Worksheets
  • Research economic data from countries with different economic systems using CIA World Factbook.


  • Read Ethanol Madness
  • Compare the economic data from countries with different economic systems using INFOhio, Index of Economic Freedom and online news sources.

Assessment Evidence

Decision-making matrix
Participation in games
Exit slip reflection on self-interest and competition.
Chapter Quizzes
Unit Test


  1. Economics – the study of how people seek to satisfy their needs and wants by making choices
  2. Scarcity – limited quantities of a resource to meet unlimited wants and needs
  3. Allocation – to set aside specific resources for a specific function
  4. Opportunity Cost – the most desirable alternative given up as the result of a decision
  5. Opportunity Benefit – the desired gain of making a decision
  6. Free Enterprise – system in which few restriction are placed on economic activity
  7. Market Economy – idealized system in which buyers and sellers have complete decision-making control over transactions
  8. Mixed Economy – varying degree of individual and government control over the market
  9. Command Economy – idealized system in which economic decisions are made by the state
  10. Efficiency -using resources to maximize the production of goods and services
  11. Self-interest – one’s own personal gain; motivates action in the free market
  12. Competition – the struggle among producers for the dollars of consumers; regulates the market
  13. Incentive – an expectation that encourages people to behave a certain way


Bag Game
Vacation Destination
Econo Game
Economics day 2 through 5