Title: Productive Resources
Date: September 6, 2007 Grade: 5th Subject:
No. of Students: 26 No. of IEPs: 3 Time: 50 minutes
TLW categorize various pictures under the headings capital, human, and natural
What resources must we use to produce goods and services for consumers?
Kentucky Program of Studies
Big Idea: Economics
Economics includes the study of production, distribution, and consumption of goods and
services. Students need to understand how their economic decisions affect them, others
and the nation as a whole. The purpose of economic education is to enable individuals
to function effectively both in their own personal lives and as citizens and participants
in an increasingly connected world economy. Students need to understand the benefits
and costs of economic interaction and interdependence among people, societies and
2.18 Students understand economic principles and are able to make economic
decisions that have consequences in daily living.
2.19 Program of Studies: Understandings
Students will understand that the basic economic problem confronting individuals,
groups and businesses in the United States today is scarcity: as a result of scarcity,
economic choices and decisions must be made.
Program of Studies: Skills and Concepts
Students will demonstrate an understanding using information from print and non-print
sources (e.g., documents, informational passages/texts, interviews, digital
and environmental) of the connection between resources, limited
productive resources and scarcity:
a) investigate different kinds of resources (e.g., natural, human, capital)
b) explain how individuals and groups in the United States make economic decisions
based upon limited productive resources (natural, human, capital) and give
examples of how these decisions create interdependence between individuals,
groups and businesses
Related Core Content for Assessment
Students will describe scarcity and explain how scarcity required people in different
periods in the U.S. (Colonization, Expansion, Twentieth Century to Present) to make
economic choices (e.g., use of productive resources- natural, human, capital) and incur
opportunity costs. DOK 2
National Economics Standards
Standard 1 : Scarcity
Students will understand that:
Productive resources are limited. Therefore, people can not 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
This lesson comes in a series of lessons focusing on economic terms. Our previous
lesson focused on producers, consumers, goods, and services. Today we will be looking
at how producers rely on productive resources to produce goods and services for
consumers. Ideas for this lesson came from the National Council for Economics
Education which I received information on through my affiliation with GATE- Global
Association of Teachers of Economics. I also adapted a lesson from the Kentucky
Council on Economic Education’s Entrepreneurs in Kentucky. The terms that are
learned in class today will be applied to science concepts in the future. I am providing
background knowledge for the students so that they will have a better understanding of
how these concepts relate to our world.
Jackson will need help writing his definitions in his vocabulary book. My students
with an IEP do not need any modifications for this lesson. They will be working with
their team and can rely on their teammates to coach them if they should have any
This lesson does not contain a lot of science integration because it is a building
block lesson. The information obtained today will allow the students to
successfully connect economic terms to science content. This lesson will help
with the integration process later in the year. This lesson does integrate some
reading strategies. It will use the students’ basic comprehension, summarizing,
sequencing, and inferencing skills.
Explain to the students that they will be read a very familiar children’s story.
However, inform them that we will be taking a different approach to this story.
Post the essential question on the board and ask students how this question will
be answered by reading The Little Red Hen.
Remind students to think about the essential question while reading the book out
loud to them.
Begin by reading Little Red Hen. (This should get the curiosity level up because
the children do not fully understand how this book relates to the essential
After reading, ask who the characters were. (hen, cat, dog, mouse)
List these characters under a heading on the board “Human resources”.
Ask for steps in the process of making the cake.
Create two more headings on the board “Capital resources” and “Natural
As the students mention any tools that the hen used to bake her cake, place
these under capital resources.
As the students mention any ingredients that went into baking the cake, place
these under natural resources.
When the students have finished answering the questions, discuss the definitions
of each word on the board (human resources are stretched a little here because
the characters are animals. Fifth graders will understand what the term means
even if animals are used.)
Record definitions in journal – capital resource – the tools, factories, and
equipment used in production; human resources – workers and other people who
are involved in production; natural resources – the land, water, mineral deposits,
forests, and other “gifts of nature” that are part of our natural endowments.
When vocabulary has been recorded, pass out large drawing paper and markers.
The ones at the table need to make a three-column chart with natural, capital,
and human resources as headings.
The twos will be given a deck of “Snap” cards to shuffle out to the team
Starting with the number ones at each table, the will choose one of their cards
and decide in which column to place it.
The student places the card.
Students two, three, and four must give a thumbs up if they agree on the
placement of the card. If all thumbs are up, the game continues to person number
two. If there are one, two, or three thumbs down, the team must discuss the
answer and come to consensus on where the card should be placed.
Only the person who placed the card is allowed to move the card if they decide it
needs to be moved.
When the team has come to consensus, the next person at the table will place a
card and the steps are repeated.
All steps are repeated until every card has been placed.
All four hands go up if there is a team question and when the team is finished.
When a team is finished, I will come around and check their answers, marking the
anecdotal record sheet for teams who had all answers correct.
The assessments for this lesson are informal and cooperative formal. The informal
assessment comes in the discussion we have about the book and how it relates to
economic terms. The formal cooperative assessment comes in the form of a game
played with resource cards. I will check for understanding of each team by checking the
placement of each card and recording that information in the form of an anecdotal
record. Tomorrow’s assessment will be more individual.
When I announced to my fifth grade class that I was going to read the Little Red Hen to
them, they looked at me like I was crazy. I could see it in there eyes that they had no
idea as to WHY I was reading this child’s book and that they had no desire to listen to it.
When I presented them with the essential question, gears began to turn and of course,
as I began to read, they relaxed some. They love to be read to even though they
wouldn’t admit it! When I finished reading, started asking questions, and categorizing
their answers on the board, you could see the light bulbs get brighter. Now they knew
why I was reading the book. Our conversation was an interesting one. In the end of the
book, the mouse, dog, and cat actually started doing chores around the house for the
hen. They were upset about not getting any of the cake the hen had made, but fully
understood that the reason why they didn’t get any was because they didn’t help her.
We were talking about this part of the story and how the hen may, in the future, be able
to produce more cakes because she had more human resources to help her. TB spoke
up and said, “Plus, they are now providing a service for the hen.” I didn’t even think
about that. That was a term we talked about two weeks ago. When I went back to that
page, the picture showed all the animals cleaning the house while the hen was laid back
on the couch. I was so excited to see that he made that connection without me
prompting him. He was absolutely right. JW (my child who is not interested in much or
doesn’t pay much attention to anything that goes on in class) also spoke up, “Wouldn’t
their house be a natural resource because it is made of wood?” I was so happy he even
spoke and to top it off, he spoke something that was right!! We got into a discussion
about homes and how it takes all three productive resources to build one. If one of
those resources were removed, the house could not be built. I think it sunk in for him!
BN had a great comment to end our discussion. She said, “You know, for all of these
years I thought that book was just about a hen, her friends, and a cake. Now I know,
there’s much more to it!” She was so right and I think it really made others realize that
economics is everywhere. It is a part of our everyday lives. Even in the children’s
classics. We had a wonderful discussion today about these terms and how they affect
our everyday lives. They are really starting to make connections and it is so fun to
watch everything start to come together and make sense to them. I can’t wait to see
what connections they begin to make as we start tying this into science content. All but
one of the groups placed the cards in the correct places. One group put milk under
capital resources. When asked why they said, “The carton is like a tool that holds the
milk.” I wasn’t thinking about the carton; I was thinking milk just like the rest of the
class. Very interesting insight.
Tomorrow the students will complete and entrance slip before class begins. On this slip
will be questions about the terms that were learned in class today. This will be done
individually. The entrance slip will act as a quick review and assessment for me before
we move on to anything else.