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So, this may be the largest thing I have posted here. It may also be the longest contiguous plan I have ever written. The plan is a framing device for a high school classroom to explore large concepts in economics and civics. (It includes the state standards)I previously posted some of the lessons that go in this unit. I assure you if you are reading down and think, “Wait, didn’t I already see this?” Maybe, but you haven’t seen all of it.  Also, I was tired of feeling like this.


“The Nature of Money, Power, and Decision Making”

Planned for 10 – 40 Students
Concept Formation
Economics Lecture


Social goals:

Students will utilize debate norms listening when others are talking, making sure points are clear, Listen to other participants and respond to them directly, use academic language. Students will come to consensus style decisions; which involve defending your own views while simultaneously considering the views of others. Students will collaborate and communicate visually.

Higher Order Thinking Skills:

The Unit relies on Evaluation and Analysis the Concept formation, Discussion Lessons and involves little else in the Simulation lesson. It has students Synthesize and Create in the Inquiry lesson.

NCSS aligned Content Objectives:

This unit touches on four (4) major themes in Social Studies and examines two, one in great depth.

This unit touches on Power Authority and Governance. In this unit we explore the means by which resources are used in a society, how businesses exert control, how government functions in relation to resource allocation, and how social class interrelates to power structures. We also interact with ideas of Global connections. During the end simulation there are built in tensions between national interests and global priorities in many fields: health care, economic development, environmental quality, and defense.

Civic Ideals and practices is recurrent throughout the unit but is used heavily during the end simulation wherein students are called to actually make decisions about real world allocations of wealth and analyze a variety of public policies and issues.

Finally, and in the greatest depth, the unit explores the nature of Production, Distribution, and Consumption. What is to  be produced? How is production to be organized? How are goods and services to be distributed? Learners need to understand these universal questions and how they are being addressed by various groups. They also need to understand that unequal distribution of resources necessitates systems of exchange, including trade, to improve  the well-being of individual groups, and the economy; that the role of government in economic policy-making varies over time and from place to place and that increasingly economic decisions are global in scope.

EALRs (in 9th & 10th grade, but it can be easily adapted up or down)

1.2.3 Evaluates the impact of various forms of government on people in the past or present.
2.2.1 Understands and analyzes how planned and market economies have shaped the production, distribution, and consumption of goods, services, and resources around the world in the past or present.
2.3.1 Analyzes the costs and benefits of government trade policies from around the world in the past or present.
2.4.1 Analyzes and evaluates how people across the world have addressed issues involved with the distribution of resources and sustainability in the past or present.
5.1.1 Analyzes consequences of positions on an issue or event.
5.2.1 Creates and uses research questions that are tied to an essential question to focus inquiry on an idea, issue, or event.
5.2.2 Evaluates the validity, reliability, and credibility of sources when researching an issue or event.
5.3.1 Evaluates one’s own viewpoint and the viewpoints of others in the context of a discussion.


Day 1 Present the Concept Formation Lesson

Day 2, 3 Discussion lesson

Day 4, 5 Inquiry presentation and creation

Day 6 Vote for best cow jokes

Day 7 “What the heck is scarcity?” Economics Lesson.  A lecture on Scarcity outlining that there is unlimited want but limited resources and so humans use a number of rationing systems. These systems dictate who gets what, when, where, and how. This will include an in depth look at the four systems of economic systems in the simulation lesson.

Day 8 The Means of Production (land, labor, capital) In this lesson we will explore what the means of production are. This will include an activity after the lesson where clipped magazine pages are land, labor, or capital. Then the teacher will present some of the industries in America which will feature in the lesson tomorrow.

Day 9, 10 Simulation and Debrief


Concept Lesson

Concept label: Socialism
Critical Attributes: Public Ownership, Democratically controlled by owners, For the good of the owners

Objective: SWBAT identify and recall attributes of socialism, Identify examples and nonexamples of socialism, justify their answers based on critical attributes

Opening: Today we are going to study a system of public ownership. Public ownership has been in the news a great deal lately and so I thought we could really dig in and study these complex systems. If we are going to really understand conflict in modern society we must first acknowledge that most conflict stems from who owns what. Ownership is important.

So today we are going to develop this concept by a process called concept formation. This is a way we can all work together to come to a greater understanding of our concept and by the end of our lesson you will be able to identify examples of the concept and nonexamples and be able to justify your answers.

1. Data gathering: I am going to give each pair (table mates) a data gathering sheet with three examples of the concept to be formed. Then I will be using the sticks (Popsicle sticks which generate random students, by drawing) to ask how your group answered be prepared to answer for your group. You will have 15 min. Set “Giant Timer”

2. Report Information
Now that all the teams have completed the charts let’s report back.
Call Ss using sticks until entire chart discussed

3. Noting differences
Based on what you heard what are some differences you notice about these examples? Write on board. Use sticks (hone in on Ss you want As from/lie)

4. Noting Similarities
Alright now that we know how they are different, what do they have in common? What is the same?  Use sticks/proximity as a way to ensure participation

5. Synthesize
Alright, now in your notebook individually I want you to make a sentence that includes all of these attributes. The sentence should begin “These examples all describe and economic system that…” Give Students 7ish minutes to work

6. Labeling
Now take the sentence you wrote and boil it down into a two word label that best describes the economic system and write it below it in your notes.

7. Labeling
Alright guys thanks for humoring me in this little brain exercise, now would you like to know the label placed on this concept by society? They throw it around in the news all the time. Socialism. Yep. That’s what Socialism is.

8. Guided practice
Now that we have an idea of what socialism is we are going to look at an example together. teacher reads aloud:
In my country, rather than leaving each individual responsible for protecting their own home from fire, everyone pools their money together, through taxes, to maintain fire and police departments. It’s operated under a non-profit status, and yes, our tax dollars pay for putting out other people’s fires. It is absurd to think of some corporation profiting from putting out fires!  It’s more efficient and far less expensive to have government run fire departments funded by tax dollars.

I will give you a moment to decide. When you decide put your hand on your desk if it is socialism and put your hand on your chin if it is not.

Alright (take answers) now I am going to ask for some volunteers to justify their answers. (Take explanations from 4 students, try to split between the two answers if there is a split, ask students to consider what they heard and re-answer ask anyone who changed their answer for a reason why, take one answer)

Closing: (Homework or classwork depending on time, they may work in pairs) Now I am going to give you the end of the assignment if you work diligently in pairs and stay on task you should be finished with most of it by the end of class. I don’t need full sentences but I do need full justifications. What you do not complete is homework.

Data gathering chart:

Example Who owns this system? Who makes the decisions that affect it? Who are the decisions supposed to benefit?
A family buisness hand makes stained glass windows in rural Vermont. One day the eldest daughter discovers the method they use to seal the windows produces a toxic byproduct that is contaminating the stream that runs through their land. After a family meeting, they decide to change the process they use to seal the windows.
Over the last ten years the  Clark County Community Soccer League has grown by leaps and bounds. It is now too big to host its tournament on the county municipal field and still have every team play. In the end they put up a collection amongst the teams to reserve a private field large enough for everyone to play.
Union Cab Video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TFYdVfp9Nj0


Concept Formation: Socialism

Example or Non-example?
Decide whether or not the situations below are examples or nonexamples of Socialism. Write or Highlight examples of the essential elements of Socialism or contradictory elements in the text. use them to provide a reason for your decision. (2-3 sentences each)

1. In 1919 a company was founded and was named after a local meat packing plant. The company then made a series of public stock offerings. In 1950  1,900 local residents each put up $25 a share to buy the company. It then became publicly owned. It has been a non-profit corporation since. Today a total of 4,750,937 shares are owned by 112,120 stockholders — none of whom receives any dividend on the initial investment. The corporation is governed by a board of directors and a seven-member executive committee.

One of the more remarkable business stories in American history, the company is kept viable by its shareholders. They love the product so much they never want the business to leave town. The company has survived during the current era, permeated by free agency of similar businesses. Although it is a very competitive field, where top employees are paid very well, this business is still deemed a desirable place to work and it has a salary cap.  Fans have come to the business’ financial rescue on several occasions, including four previous stock sales: 1923, 1935, 1950 and 1997. To protect against someone taking control of the team, the articles of incorporation prohibit any person from owning more than 200,000 share.

2.  A heavily militarized country had a very low tax rate even though they were in the middle of a large war. In order to maintain their economy they acquired new territories then these new territories were made to sell natural resources and farmed products to the country’s businesses at extremely low prices. Wages and prices were controlled by the government. Businesses became larger and larger monopolies. As big business became increasingly organized, it developed an increasingly close partnership with the government. The government pursued economic policies that maximized the profits of its business allies, and, in exchange, business leaders supported the government’s political and military goals.

3. A religious group existed where all the believers were united in heart and mind.They felt that what they owned was not their own, so they shared everything they had. There were no needy people among them, because those who owned land or houses would sell them and bring the money to the church leaders to give to those in need. For instance, there was a man who sold a field he owned and brought the money to the church leaders so they could give it to the poor. .

4. A government that tries to make sure that people buy and sell fairly, and that businesses do not hurt workers too much. Because the government takes a lot of money in taxes, it also buys a lot of things and gives a lot of money away. It spends money on guns and ships for the military, on science research in universities, and on schools and libraries. It also gives money to people who do not have jobs, and to businesses that the political leaders think are important.

5. Find or make up an example of socialism (use the internet, books, make one up) and explain why it is using the definition we came up with. Be sure it includes all three attributes.

6. Below is an nonexample of Socialism change it so it is socialism.

An economic system which grants benefits to most participants. This system is based on private, single person, or small group ownership of property, businesses, and industry, and directed towards making the greatest possible profits for successful organizations and people.



Discussion lesson

1. Ss will be discussing/exploring the concept of Socialism

2. Lesson objective
Intellectual: Ss will utilize debate norms (listening when others are talking, making sure points are clear, Listen to other participants and respond to them directly, use academic language)

Academic students will come to consensus style decisions about the four examples they were given yesterday. They will evaluate the examples and as a group share their ideas and synthesize their reasoning into a group decision. (80% must consent)

Their reward will be to know what these systems are.

3. Rationale:
What makes this a good issue to discuss? The issue is highly topical. It is used often in the current political world and it is often used incorrectly. If students are going to be able to debate whether or not Obamacare is socialism, they need to know what socialism is.

How does it fit in with the curriculum? The students are studying current events as part of their civics, economics, and social studies skills curriculum. the lesson is appropriate to these standards in grades 9 and up.

Age appropriate? The controversies of socialism are easily handleable by a ninth grade audience. They often get the holocaust this year or the year before.

Is it of “enduring social importance”? Yes. Socialism has been with us in many incarnations for hundreds of years. Joint ownership has been used by peoples all the way back to the bronze era and modern socialism maintains a significant role in international politics as well as maintaining a presence at home.

4. Procedures:

Good morning class please take out your homework from last night. Today we are going to discuss your answers and come to a consensus. A consensus is a decision where all parties consent. This means they all agree to stand by the decision of the group. Today we are going to use a super-majority as a decider. Before we can move on we must be %80 in line with the group decision.

Today we will discuss the four groups from yesterday, and you will be sharing what you thought and wrote down.

We will be using our debate norms (see above) and we will be using academic language to discuss our ideas.

Here are some sentence stems I brought to get you all started using these phrases or to give you a jump start if you get stuck. I will only be asking questions and guiding. You will have to come to a decision on your own.

On a transparency/doc cam

To better understand One point that was not clear to me was …
Are you saying that …
Can you please clarify?
To share an idea Another idea is to …
What if we tried …
I have an idea, we could try …
To disagree I see your point, but what about …
Another way of looking at it is …
I’m still not convinced that …
To challenge How did you reach your conclusion?
What makes you think that?
How does it explain …
To look for feedback What would you do to improve this?
Does this make sense?
How could my idea be improved?
To provide positive feedback One strength is …
Your idea is good because …
To provide constructive feedback The argument would be stronger if …
Another way to do it would be …
What if you said it like this …

Ss will discuss each situation like so.
1. Students will be asked to grab only their paper and a pencil. Then to tidy their desk space. (Tuck everything in and out from underfoot)

2. Then they will be split, if they thought the example was a nonexample they will go to one side of the room and to the other is they thought it an example.

3. They will then be asked to huddle up and go over their decisions. Get their points in order. (5 min) teacher floats to see which students are offering answers, notes it. Will compare to discussion notes later and to student handouts. (noting changes of opinion, in particular. You have to learn something in order to change your mind)

4. We reconvene in a group. The Example side always goes first. Guide them to use sentence stems. Allow nonexample to explain itself. use the critical attributes to frame questions for students.

Discussion Questions

Which do you think this is?
Does it have (critical element)?
Where in the text can you find this element?

To the opposition.
Do you think this is an example of critical attribute? Why/why not?

After a ten minute interval (supposing they have not done so on their own) ask them to have a re-vote if they meet consensus move to the next example. If not ask what key elements are missing for the protesting students and what the others could do to convince them. If consensus cannot be reached teacher may provide students with additional facts about the situation tailored to give facts to the remaining demands.

As consensus is reached for each situation is reached reveal the identity of the players.

1. Green Bay Packers
2. Nazi party
3. The Early Christian Church
4. Canada

Guide questions:
Who makes decisions in the system?
Who do they benefit?
Who owns it?

The prep work here was all done the night before in homework. As the night before was a heavy homework load I have not given them additional readings to come at socialism one day one. On day two students will be divided into three group to begin an inquiry discussion on the different brands of socialism.




Lesson objectives:

SWBAT construct humorous concise definitions for 10 major political economic philosophies.

Doubt Concern Initiation:
(Show students cow poster) http://edo.ohlawd.net/pics/e-cow-nomics.jpg

There is a very old joke about cows, basically it goes like this you have two cows and… then the humorist fills in a short clip on their perception of the economic and political system. Jokes of this type attracted the attention of a scholar in the USA as early as 1944. An article in The Modern Language Journal discusses the classical ones, such as

  • Socialism: You have two cows. The government takes one and gives it to your neighbor.
  • Communism: You have two cows. You give them to the Government, and the Government then gives you some milk.
  • Fascism: You have two cows. You give them to the Government, and the Government then sells you some milk.
  • Capitalism: You have two cows. You sell one and buy a bull.
  • Nazism: You have two cows. The Government shoots you and takes the cows.
  • New Dealism: You have two cows. The Government takes both, shoots one, buys milk from the other cow , then pours the milk down the drain.

3. Problem Identification

These go around the internet all the time and I have to admit, they’re pretty funny even if they are not very accurate. Here’s the problem though, I have seen this sort of thing up in classrooms as a teaching tool. That’s lame. So today I am going to give you a list of “two cow” illustrations, and your job will be to fix it. In the end we will vote as a class on the best panels and then combine them into a poster which we will put up both on the wall in here and on the internet as a free printable classroom poster. You will pick 10 of the 12 illustrations to make more accurate. Then you and a partner will write a new better synopsis. (Giant list of Cow jokes below) and illustrate it. After you finish your definitions I will check them and if they seem alright I will give you the go ahead to start illustrating them.

4. Hypothesis
Which ones would you like to research? Which would you like to change? How do you think they are wrong? (Have students answer these question briefly as their hypothesis piece, in writing. You will refer back to this later)

5. Data collection
After deciding which to research and possibly improve on, if students find no flaw they are to explain why the joke is correct and then decide whether or not they will re-illustrate. Students will look up the systems of government via these sources: Dictionaries, to define the concept, then encyclopedias, and informational articles, a teacher made start web page (likely a Squidoo lens) will be provided with pertinent links and sources.

6. Evaluation and Synthesis of Data
Students will cull through their sources and develop a working definition of the practice. They will then translate that into a joke about cows. I will assist students in making their definitions by suggesting sources from the web list (and other places) if they get stuck. Students will need to gather and analyse historical and political data in order to make their definitions. The joke about cows will be of their own making.

7. Potential Results:
I hope that I will get decent coverage on a wide range of ideologies. High school students long to be funny and creative. I hope this lesson will be loud as students make joke to each other in this frame, as they illustrate the ridiculous and the serious. I hope they laugh at each other and work to make jokes that are funny, memorable, AND accurate.

ANARCHISM You have two cows. Either you sell the milk at a fair price or your neighbors try to take the cows and kill you.

ARISTOCRATISM You have two cows. You sell both and buy one really big cow – with a pedigree.

BUREAUCRACY  You have two cows. The government loses one cow, milks the other and then spills the milk.

CAPITALISM You have two cows. You sell one and buy a bull.

CENTRALISM You have two cows. And a problem finding them in the middle of the field with 100,000,000 other cows.

COMMUNISM You have two cows. The government takes both of them and gives you part of the milk.

COMMUNISM — CAMBODIAN You have two cows. The government takes both and shoots you.
COMMUNISM — CHINESE You don’t have any cows. The government sets up a joint venture with McDonald’s.

COMMUNISM — SOVIET You have two cows. You have to take care of them, but the government takes all the milk. Then the government sends you to prison.

DEMOCRACY You have two cows. Your neighbors decide who gets the milk.

DEMOCRACY You have two cows. They outvote you 2-1 to ban all meat and dairy products. You go bankrupt.

DEMOCRACY — REPRESENTATIVE You have two cows. Your neighbors pick someone to tell you who gets the milk.

DICTATORSHIP You have two cows. The government takes both cows and drafts you.

FASCISM You have two cows. The government takes both, hires you to take care of them, and sells you the milk.

FASCISM You have two cows. You give the milk to the government and the government sells it.

FEUDALISM You have two cows. Your lord takes some of the milk.

INDUSTRIALISM You have two cows. You dissect them both and figure out how to build a milk-factory instead.

INNOVATIONISM You have two cows. You patent “cow” and claim license fees from all the milk of the world. (“All your milk are belong to us.”)

LIBERALISM You have two cows. You sell both to the rich. The government then taxes the rich one cow and gives it to the poor.

LIBERALISM You have two cows. You give away one cow and get the government to give you a new cow. Then you give them both away.

LIBERTARIANISM You have two cows. You let them do what they want.

MARXISM/LENINISM The proletarian cows unite and overthrow the bourgeoisie cow herds. The egalitarian democratic cow revolutionary state with the cow party as vanguard disintegrate over time. Marx choked on a veggie-burger before he could explain what happens to the use-value, exchange-value and sign-value of bovine leather.

NAZISM You have two cows. The government takes both and then shoots you.

PROTECTIONISM You have two cows. You can’t buy a bull from another country.

SOCIALISM You have two cows. The government takes one of them and gives it to your neighbor.

SOCIALISM — BUREAUCRATIC You have two cows. The government takes them and puts them in a barn with everyone else’s cows. They are cared for by ex-chicken farmers. You have to take care of the chickens the government took from the chicken farmers. The government gives you as much milk and eggs as the regulations say you should need.

SOCIALISM — PURE You have two cows. The government takes them and puts them in a barn with everyone else’s cows. You have to take care of all the cows. The government gives you as much milk as you need.

SURREALISM You have two giraffes. The government requires you to take harmonica lessons.

TALIBANISM You have two cows. At first, the government makes them wear burkas, but later shoots them because “they are Hindu religious symbols.”


Simulation Lesson

Title: Guns, Butter, and the Means of Production

Concept: Socialism and the means of production

1. Lesson Objectives

Students will be able to identify and articulate the how decisions within a society differ based on who owns the means of production.

Students will be able to confer and decide what to do in their “country” as it plays best to their roles.

Students will experiment with the real cost of things in their society and judge how they fit into the “cost/benefit” models of different economic systems. Prices are based on similar “goods” in the real world. (Yes, That is how much it takes to make Sesame Street.)

Rationale: As historians we often find ourselves attempting to understand why societies choose the things they do. This lesson works to illustrate one reason why things work the way they do. It will give students practice doing just that from within these various systems. Further, ownership is a basic tenet of economics, civics, and history this lesson instructs student to consider this as a vital part of how decisions are made.

2. Before the Simulation


Prior to this simulation, the teacher will need three types of handouts (4 dossiers ) : Communist, Socialist, Capitalist, Feudalist and Calculators.

Each Dossier will outline the role of the student group in their society. They are the people who in society owns the means of production, (factories, tools, raw materials, and everything except the labor that goes into producing a good). They will be deciding the best use of the means of production for their group.

The Means of Production include the following industries:
Oil/Natural Gas/ Energy
Health Care


Prior to the simulation, students will have completed a concept formation lesson on ‘socialism’ and will be able to differentiate between examples and non-examples of socialism, amongst these have been examples of Capitalism and Fascism. Following this lesson, students will participate in an inquiry lesson in which they explore the question: “Given what we know about Socialism has there ever been a Socialist State, successful, or otherwise?” Students will learn their role and the procedures by carefully reading their dossiers and through the short presentation of the teacher, mostly outlining the exact definition of the means of production.

3. Initiation and Direction

Teacher will sort students into predetermined groups. (ability based, a variety of levels in each group) as groups are divided they will shown sealed manila envelopes with information about their country. Students will given dossiers after teacher has presented the rules of the scenario and finished giving instructions. Dossiers will instruct students to pick a

Group Leader(their responsibility is to ensure the group stays on task)
Note Taker (they will record the decisions that were made and why they were made)
Public Speaker (They will report the government’s decisions to the group)
Time Keeper (Keep track of time)

Teacher will begin by reminding class what is meant by the means of production. (There was a lesson on guns vs butter and scarcity in the interim. The gist? We can not buy everything, we must choose. They are now linking this to Who and How the decisions are made. Fun!)

4. Describing the Scenario

In your country’s dossier you will find information outlining who you are in your country and which economic system runs your country.  Your assignment is to discuss with the other members of your group what the most appropriate decisions are to make for yourselves. You will find a variety of decisions to make, and you must choose those you feel work best to accomplish your group’s goals.

5. Enactment

Once students have received the instructions and have divided into groups, begin the simulation. Teacher will instruct students to read the dossier out loud to their group and to ask for help if they need help clarifying their roles or motivations or for the things they can buy.

During the simulation, students will be working cooperatively in small groups by collaborating with their group members to discuss their strategy to increase their utility as they debate the classical argument guns vs. butter.
In addition, students will respectfully debate the pros and cons of each choice for healthcare, building their military, investing in renewable energy, and innovation. Eventually, they will make decisions by evaluating their options and choosing what they believe to be the best move.

6. Debriefing

Following the simulation, inform students that they are going to debrief about their experiences and feelings. Explain to them that this is a time to reflect on both the simulation itself and the similarities and differences to actual events in history.

Each decision will have consequences, but the consequence may or may not impact those who own the means of production as each country comes to a decision after they have debated they will raise their hands and teacher will give them the envelope for their decision.

Ask students press correspondent to report what the secretary has written down.

As students report their decisions on each issue as a verbal report of what they chose to buy and why

As a group
·      What can you take away from this simulation?

–      How does ownership affect decision making?

·      How was this simulation similar to actual events in history?


CAPITALIST  –  Cover Art

Page One:

You are an elite group of multi-billionaires. Between you, you own a controlling interest of shares in every major industry in your country. As well as many other business interests around the world. Put the means of production to their best use. Increase your utility as much as possible with what you have. You won’t be able to do everything but do as much as you can to maximize your profits. Remember a good public image can go a long way to increase your market share and a penny saved is a penny earned.

Your total starting cash: ____$2,635,208,000,000_______

Before you begin decide who will have each job

President (Their responsibility is to ensure the group stays on task)


Secretary (They will record the decisions that were made and why they were made)


Public Relations Officer (They will report the government’s decisions to the group)


Efficiency Expert (Keep track of time and profits vs. costs)


Cover Page:

Page One:

You are the leadership of the state as ordained by God. The first and second estates, namely and the royal family and the leadership of the church. Put the means of production to their best use. Increase your utility as much as possible with what you have. You won’t be able to do everything but do as much as you can to gain national prestige (The monarchy is the state and the state is the monarchy), to fill your treasury (for what is a ruling class without opulence?) and to appease your subjects enough so they do not revolt.

Your total starting cash: ____$2,635,208,000,000____

Before you begin decide who will have each job

Monarch (Their responsibility is to ensure the group stays on task)


Vasier (They will record the decisions that were made and why they were made)


Regent (They will report the government’s decisions to the group)


Pope/Papess (Keep track of time and profits vs. costs)


Cover Page:

Page One:
You are the top heads of state in a communist nation. This is a currenciless society, but that does not mean you don’t need things. The workforce must be fed and educated. Further, you must show the world your might as a nation. Put the means of production to their best use. Increase your utility as much as possible with what you have. You won’t be able to do everything but do as much as you can to maximize your utility. Remember a good public image can go a long way to increase your prestige worldwide.

Your total starting labor hours: ____263,520,800,000____

TEACHER NOTE: Hours are simply $10 = 1 hour the dossier should be converted accordingly.

Before you begin decide who will have each job

Party Leader (Their responsibility is to ensure the group stays on task)


Party Historian (They will record the decisions that were made and why they were made)


Propagandist (They will report the government’s decisions to the group)


Efficiency Expert (Keep track of time and costs)


Cover Page:

Page One-

You are the citizens of an industrialized nation. You are teachers, farmers, factory workers, soldiers, pilots, doctors, students, clerks, nurses, etc. You have come together to democratically plan your nation’s economy for the next ten years. Put the means of production to their best use. Increase your utility as much as possible with what you have. You won’t be able to do everything but do as much as you can to increase the utility of the populace of your country.

Starting Cash: ____$2,635,208,000,000____

Before you begin decide who will have each job

President (Their responsibility is to ensure the group stays on task)


Historian (They will record the decisions that were made and why they were made)


Journalist (They will report the government’s decisions to the group)


Chief Economic Planner (Keep track of time and costs)


Page Two:
There are nine major industries to be decided on. In the blank beneath each industry, write what you have chosen to buy and the cost.


Energy/Natural Resources

Health Care






TOTAL: _____________________

Page Three/Four:

Justification: On these pages write why you decided to use the means of production the way you did. Justify your decision for each industry in AT LEAST two complete sentences. Explain how your decision helps you reach your end goals.

Energy/Natural Resources

Health Care







[  ] Create noncommercial, educational children’s programming. Although it reaches a large audience this programming does not generate profit because there are no ads.

COST: _$136 million__ PROFIT: ______0_____

[  ] Create reality television, which is entertaining enough to generate a small fan base but because it does not need writers or actors is very cheap to produce.

COST:_$12 million_____ PROFIT:__$15 million_

[  ]Create prime time drama. themed toward adults using actors and writers. [CAP/FEUD: The fan base is large so advertising dollars abound.] the show will win many awards for its artistic merits.

COST: 40 million PROFIT: $10 million

[  ] Create and maintain a free press, both local and national. This will require crews of journalists. It is very labor intensive and therefore expensive. CAP[ Because most channels cater to small areas they have limited commercial returns] FEUD [It is known to rile up the peasants because] An informed populace is considered important to democracy because they will be more involved in the democratic process and will work hard to ensure that their own best interests are served.

COST: ____$4.5 billion_____ PROFIT: ___$5 million___


All current energy sources are being used to capacity. In order to sustain the standard of living in your country you must expand your energy portfolio. Pick one or more of the energy sources from below.

[  ] Hydrofracking is a process where fresh water is forced underground at intense pressures. This fractures the rock below to release natural gas. The process is highly controversial because it can and often does pollute surrounding ground water. CAP [The cost of cleanup is shouldered by the state.]

COST: _(CAP: $270M)_$5 billion PROFIT: _____$ 627,million______

[  ] Exploit Tar Sands Oil. This process is very labor intensive. tar sand oil flows very slowly, if at all, so the sands must be extracted by strip mining or the oil made to flow by other techniques, which reduce the viscosity by injecting steam, chemicals, and/or hot air into the sands. These processes can use more water and require larger amounts of energy than regular oil extraction.

COST: _____$27,billion__ PROFIT: ____$33,billion______

[  ] Give companies transitional funding for wind and solar power. In the beginning these industries will create less energy than other fossil fuel sources. They also can not be converted as easily to use by combustion engines (airplanes, military vehicles, private automobiles, etc.) Over time though they are not depleted like fossil fuel sources, they do not require massive cleanup efforts if something goes wrong, and they do not contribute to climate change.

COST: ___$160,billion____ PROFIT: ____$8,billion___

[  ] Drill for oil in the deep sea bed. Offshore oil and gas production is more technologically challenging than land-based installations due to the remote and harsher environment. The process is very risky, to the personnel on the oil rigs and to the surrounding environment. Deep sea wells are for the most part untapped and so they yield large quantities of crude oil.

COST: _$201.9 Billion (If nothing goes wrong)    PROFIT: ___$400,Billion ___


Choose one (1) system from the list below.

[  ] Use private insurance firms to provide health care services. While hospitals receive some funding from the state most costs are shouldered by patients through private insurance firms. these firms compete to get the most revenue either by gaining more clients or by raising prices, or both.

COST: _$355,Billion                   PROFIT: ____$57,Billion ______

[  ] Use private insurers but provide a public option. A public option is a non-profit insurance plan provided by the government that competes with the private insurers, because it does not work to maximize its own profits it is usually a cheaper plan. It serves to create competition and incentive for private companies to lower prices and provide more services.

COST: __$710,Billion ____ PROFIT: ___$42,Billion __

[  ] Single payer is a health care system which is paid for completely by the government. Doctors, nurses, EMTs, etc, are all employees of the state. Anyone who needs medical care receives it. This program is much like medicare in the United States, but is open to everyone regardless of age.

COST: ____$455,Billion __ PROFIT: _______0_______

[  ] Private doctors. The whole burden of medical care is on the individual consumer. Everyone simply employs their own physician. If they need hospitalization they pay for their stay there in its entirety much like they would for a hotel. Doctors may charge whatever they wish and work as completely independent contractors. [COM: not available]

COST: _____0_______ PROFIT: ____$1,Billion _____


Every population must eat, you must therefore chose AT LEAST two of the following food production methods. Whether or not you choose to share with other nations is up to you.

[  ] Monocrop grain is the is the high-yield agricultural practice of growing a single crop year after year on the same land, in the absence rotation through other crops. Corn, soybeans and wheat are three common crops often grown using monocropping techniques. While economically a very efficient system, it can damage the soil ecology and increase crop vulnerability to insects, plants, and microorganisms. The result is a more fragile ecosystem with an increased dependency on pesticides and artificial fertilizers. The concentrated presence of a single single crop, that has been genetically adapted, makes it so an entire crop can be wiped out very quickly by a single opportunistic species.

COST: __300 billion___ PROFIT: ___150 billion___

[  ] Large scale meat, milk, and egg production makes it so that the average citizen can eat animal products with 70% or more of their meals. This sort of farming produces the highest amount at the lowest cost by relying on economies of scale, modern machinery, biotechnology, and global trade. Without this process people in your country could only eat meat a few times a week at most and would also have to scale down their consumption of other animal products. Bringing an abundance of meat, dairy and eggs to a country is done by raising livestock in farms that operates like factories. However, there have been issues regarding whether factory farming is sustainable and ethical. It requires antibiotics and pesticides to slow the spread of disease and parasites. It produces a large amount of animal waste and uses a lot of water. If you take large scale meat, milk, and eggs, you MUST take monocrop grains.

COST: _265 billion___ PROFIT: ___180 billion_____

[  ] Variety Cereals is a method of farming grains where farms are small and grow a large assortment of different types of the same crop. Farmers decide which crop is best for their farms and their customers. The process relies on crop rotation and letting the land go fallow for seasons at a time. So although it produces a similar yield of grain it is more labor and land intensive than monocropping. The farms are more resistant to disease and famine because there is not a single crop but many. They do not use as much pesticide or fertilizer. CAP[which means they are less profitable]

COST: __500 billion______ PROFIT: __50 billion______

[  ] Produce farms and orchards. Fruit and vegetable farming requires a large amount of specialized equipment, and is labor intensive.  Production practices are different from one crop to the next.  Machine harvest is possible for the processing market (Jams, sauces, etc.) but for the most part the product is fragile. Many fruits and vegetables destined for the fresh market have to be hand-picked to prevent damage. Irrigation is needed to grow many fruit and vegetable crops.  Irrigation systems must be built and maintained to sustain them.

COST: ___450 billion______ PROFIT: _______135 billion_____

Optional: FOOD AID

Not every country is as economically well off as your own. If you wish you may send food to the starving in these countries. It will take more than the initial costs of the food You will need to put in Labor (to oversee the transport and distribution) and Transportation (fuel and a means to carry it).

Food aid to feed 1 billion starving people.

COST: ____$195,billion_______ PROFIT: _______0________

Food aid to feed 500 million starving people.

COST: ____$100,billion PROFIT: _______0________


[  ] Go to Mars. Being the first nation on Mars is a matter of national pride and will increase the prestige of any nation bold enough to try it, provided they succeed. Although there are few consumer ready innovations that come from this research, it is believed to be an inspiration to young people and an encouragement to people to become scientists.

COST: ____$600,Billion ____ PROFIT: _______0________

[  ] Build bullet trains. High speed rail is fast, efficient, affordable, eco-friendly and will quickly transport your population around the nation. It cuts down on traffic and congestion problems in the cities and greatly reduces greenhouse gases. CAP [If chosen reduce the profits from commercial air and new cars by 10%, because of competition.]

COST: _____59,Billion __ PROFIT: _______0____

[  ] Air Travel because a fleet of planes currently exists, this transport solution is a very cheap way to move people across the country. The aging fleet produces a large amount of greenhouses gases and in order to maintain costs seating is cramped. CAP/FEUD [ Better seats can be purchased for 600% of what a coach seats cost]

COST: ____$216,Billion __ PROFIT: ___$7.1Billion ___

10,000 New Cars
[  ]  CAP/FEUD[This system is highly profitable]  Although a higher percentage of cars than ever before are hybrids or electric, most are still full gasoline models. The cost of more cars also means more gridlock, a greater strain on infrastructure, and higher stress levels. Some say though that the cultural benefits of the car (drive in movies, road trips, the freedom to pick up and leave whenever,) are vitally important.

COST: _________$150,million__ PROFIT: __$135,million_


Pick one of the following options for your nation.

[  ] Largest Military in the World. By taking this option you will have the means to protect not only yourself and your allies but also any overseas interests you may have. You gain the security of knowing that if you are attacked you will prevail. There is, of course, a human cost to deploying this force but victories create prestige and power for a nation. CAP [it also creates profits by way of the manufacturing and agricultural industries] Because of the energy usage of the machines you MUST take deep sea drilling.

COST: ___711,Billion ______ PROFIT: ____1,Billion __

[  ] Medium Size Military. A Military as large as the next largest one on the planet. Although large enough to protect your nation from threats, it will not be large enough to guarantee your victory if there is a war. You will need to therefore spend more time making alliances with other nations. It will not be large enough to protect your overseas interests as well as defending your country so you will have to more careful about how/when/if you deploy it.

COST: __341,Billion __ PROFIT: ____50,000,000_____

[  ] Defense only military. A military just large enough to protect your nation if attacked. It cannot be used for anything else. You must rely on alliances to protect you but they will be harder to come by as you cannot use mutual defence as a bargaining chip. If you take this option consider the need for national prestige more greatly.

COST: ____55,Billion __ PROFIT: _______0_______


[  ] Designer crafted clothing and textiles are handmade by designers and are of the highest quality. A production line is small but highly fashionable. This option comes with a great deal of consumer choice and the standards are very high. COM/SOC [however it will produce fewer items for people to use overall than other methods.]

COST: _1.2 Billion3___ PROFIT: __$252,Billion __

[  ] Localized production of practical goods. Basic clothing and linens produced in large quantities by factories in your nation. The clothing is not as flashy as designer apparel and there are fewer choices but it is a quality product made under conditions that can be monitored for fairness to and the safety of employees.

COST: _57,Billion _ PROFIT: _3.9 Billion

[  ] In lieu of making fabric goods in your own nation you import them from another and handle distribution. the costs are low but you cannot be assured of the quality of the fabric goods nor can you be sure of the labor practices of the other countries factories. You have been assured that the labor practices and conditions in the factories are good and people are always applying to work there, but there have been a few reports saying poverty is driving people to work in unsafe places for low pay.

COST: _$500,million__ PROFIT: __$370,million_


The more education your people have to more productive they are, however it is impossible to know how your investment now will pay off down the road. Choose one of the following systems to educate the populace.

[  ] Complete Public Education. Preschool through Phd, tuition is paid for. K-12 is mandatory and anyone who chooses and/or qualifies may attend preschool and higher education.

COST: _____$900,Billion ______ PROFIT: ________0_______

[  ] Half and Half. K-12 is mandatory and paid for but preschool and higher education are private. Private institutions are open to those who can pay. COM [Meet the strictest state standards, There is no preschool. ]

COST: ___$559.6 Billion ____ PROFIT: _$516.6 Billion

[  ] Basic Public. K-8 are funded and mandatory. COM [No preschool] secondary and higher education are private and open to those who qualify and can pay. COM [Meet the strictest state standards]

COST: ___$387.4 Billion PROFIT:    $731.8 Billion

[  ] Complete private K-12 is optional and paid for by the individual. Education comes from private schools, tutors and parents can always teach their own children. Private schools are open to all who qualify and can pay. COM [  ] Restricted education. K-12 is open to those who meet the highest standards. There is no preschool. Anyone who completes  the rigorous placement test for their age level may attend but there are few places available. Otherwise parents teach their children.

COST: _$29,137,700          PROFIT: __$90,000,000____