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Center for Economic Education


Center for Economic Education

The Center for Economic Education is an outreach program of Clarion University of Pennsylvania.  The center works with teachers in northwestern Pennsylvania schools.  By sharing resources and curricula with teachers, the center strives to improve economic literacy among students.  The center is a part of ECONOMICSPennsylvania, and is affiliated with the National Council on Economic Education.

The goals of this center, ECONOMICSPennsylvania, and the National Council on Economic Education, are to develop, distribute, and present materials to K-12 teachers from grades so they can more effectively teach vital economic principles to their students.  The broad goal is to to make an economically literate populace in Pennsylvania. 


ECONOMICSPennsylvania and the National Council on Economic Education are an unbeatable partnership in the provision of economic education to Pennsylvania's students.

To support teachers in our area, the center provides workshops each semester, maintains a library of curricula, videos, and resources, and hosts the Stock Market Game for schools in the region.  In order to cut down fewer trees and to make our newsletter more widely available at the same time, we have posted our Newsletter on the site here.

This semester, the center will offer workshops satisfying "Act 48" credits for Pennsylvania teachers on four topics of interest.  These topics are The Stock Market Game, The Business Plan Competition, Economics and the Envrionment, a combination of two booklets of materials developed by a set of international authors: Roosters to Robots and Old McDonald to Uncle Sam, and FOCUS: Institutions and Markets. The latter two are new, and are quite exciting.

The Stock Market Game is the premier simulation game for teaching students about the workings of the Stock Market and the American economy.  Over the course of 10 weeks, students invest a hypothetical $100,000 in Nasdaq, AMEX, and NYSE-listed common stocks.  Students research stocks, make reports, manage budgets, follow companies in the news, and make decisions on whether to buy, hold, or sell stocks.  The game is played in near-real time, utilizing the actual prices on the various exchanges as they exist at the end of the business day.

The Stock Market Game is the original and premier educational program that stimulates learning about economics, finance, and the American economic system. 

The program is primarily used by students in grades 4 through 12, post-secondary students, and others who want to learn more about investing and managing their financial future. An exciting, real-world simulation, The Stock Market Game enables participants to discover the risks and rewards involved in decision-making, the sources and uses of capital, and other related economic concepts.

Teachers turn to The Stock Market Game to help meet educational standards across many required disciplines. They find SMG provides an unmatched level of comprehensive curriculum materials for students of all ability levels and hands-on support from a nationwide network of coordinators. 

Workshops are mandatory for first time players.


The Business Plan Competition exposes students to the world of entrepreneurship and small business while at the same time fostering their creative thinking and problem-solving skills.

Through the development and actual writing of a business plan, students learn how to create a small business from the ground up, how to turn an idea into a concrete business concept, and how to develop that business's operating, marketing, and financial plans. Additionally, students are confronted with many issues related to competing in a global economy.

Since the state-wide Business Plan Competition was introduced in 1997, hundreds of students from across the Commonwealth have submitted business plans. Once received, the plans are divided by geographic region and reviewed by regional judging panels. The regional winning plans are then automatically entered into the state-wide competition. Three of these plans are then chosen to receive the top honors and cash prizes.

Teachers attending Business Plan Competition workshops receive copies of "How to Write a Successful Business Plan."


Economics and the Environment comes in two grade levels, a junior high text called Ecodetectives, and a 9-12 text called Economics and the Environment.  Both texts  demonstrate how economics can be easily applied to envrionmental issues, and  consist of several lessons that assist middle and high school students connect economic behavior and 
incentives to economic destruction and preservation.

Economic use of resources is a "good" for our well being.  But, in using resources, there is often an incentive to overuse, and create "bads" such as pollution or destruction of the environment.  Lessons are organized into seven units and each focus on one key concept in understanding how environmental resources are used, why there are incentives for occasional over use, and how incentives may be organized to allow for both economic use and preservation.  Ecodetectives is for grades 5-8 and Economics and the Environment is for high school students.


Roosters to Robots and Old Mc Donald to Uncle Sam each incorporate six lesson plans for children from elementary to high school.  Each booklet contains at least one lesson for each grade level.  Lessons in "Roosters" include the problems with barter and the benefits of money, productivity in making origami cups, gross domestic pizza, the differences between command and market economies, making clothes from grain, and causes of economic growth.  Lessons in "Old McDonald" include singing the song "Old McDonald" to include goods and services, the creation of a community and the provision of public and private goods, the need for writing and record keeping using Babylonian texts, federal budgets, scarcity and choice, and public goods and services and the free rider problem.

The larger picture in which these lessons fit is an attempt by these writers, in conjunction with American educators, to develop lessons teaching about the free market system to students in economies making the transition to that system from other systems.


FOCUS: Institutions and Markets is the newest volume in the FOCUS series. Your students will discover the roles markets, governments and institutions play in developing a thriving free-market system, and the role these institutions play in their daily lives.  The economic impact and importance of institutions, such as banks, schools, laws and the rules of the game, as well as institutions such as that of marriage, have been overlooked for many years.  This curriculum brings much needed focus onto these important agents in a free-market economy.

You'll use history, civics, government and economics activities that bring to life the institutions your students read and hear about everyday.  Your students look at real-world scenarios and easily realize how global institutions play a role in our economy... and their day-to-day lives. 

While you're introducing new concepts to your students, you'll also sharpen their life skills.  Through lively discussions, debates, data analysis and teamwork activities, your students will strengthen their life skills and discover how to make solid decisions - about institutions, markets and life.  Your students will use a lunch menu to determine the efficiency of markets, delve inside a case of trademark piracy, and role-play bankers and stockbrokers to uncover the function of financial intermediaries, and much more... Please join us for a workshop.


Feel free to contact the center for additional information:

Dr. Paul Woodburne, Director
Center for Economic Education
301 Still Hall
Clarion, PA 16214-1232

Fax: 814-393-1910