It is difficult to find a text to ignite enthusiasm in children for basic economics. Actually, it’s difficult to find a text that teaches economics to adults (I do recommend Thomas Sowell’s Basic Economics) . . . which leads to all sorts of other problems…. But that’s for another day.
In the far, far background of my pile of projects I have toiled on a set of Fairy Tales that convey complicated math concepts in bite-sized nuggets as well as basic economics with the intent of passing along to my godchildren and perhaps my own kiddos some useful stuff….
So I keep an eye out for similar projects. From me to you via NYTimes Blog via Twitter:
They’ve explained how you can convey the economic concepts of popular tales to your children.
If you think about it, what is the Three Pigs really about? Is it just a jumble of portly pink farm animals running about or is it a lesson in investment and return on that investment. Pig #3 builds a brick house. That took significant time and money. Pig #1 built a house of straw – like most start-ups, here today, gone tomorrow, but he could build it quickly. Pig #2 thinking he improved on Pig #1’s concept without the burden of Pig #3’s concept builds with sticks . . . which really proves to be nothing more than heavy straw – much like a start-up with “seasoned professionals?”
On the simple math side, the Three Pigs introduces the concept of cost / benefit analysis as well as perseverance with harder path in the face of seemingly quick fix solutions. Add in a few simple numbers and let the kids decide for themselves – build with brick or go for straw and hope your Brick brother will bail you out….
Simple Economics for kids of all ages.