Play-Doh™ Economics

Do you remember playing with Play Dough(TM) as a child? Are your children or grandchildren playing with it now? Or maybe you have some hidden in a drawer to help relieve stress. On first inspection, little seems to have changed since we were kids. But where we may have learned things about shapes and colors, today’s kids are learning about economics. And they are having just as much fun.


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“When students have fun in the classroom, we know they are more likely to take that knowledge with them into the real world,” Robert Duvall, President and CEO of the National Council on Economic Education (NCEE) reported in a statement announcing the release of the revised and updated Play Dough Economics curriculum. “Key economic concepts come to life, making economics fun for students and teachers alike.”

A perennial bestseller, Play Dough Economics brings key economic concepts to life for elementary and middle-school students using hands-on activities. Each of the 15 lesson plans contain procedures, follow-up activities, and worksheets covering such topics as scarcity; opportunity cost; profit; goods vs. services; saving and investing; supply and demand; and inflation. The new updated version also contains pre- and post- tests with answers keys, additional curriculum resources giving teachers a variety of flexible reinforcement activities and even a recipe for making play dough.

The Play Dough curriculum strives to provide financial and economic literacy for students and teachers, helping them develop the real life skills needed to be successful savers, investors, consumers, and workers in a global economy.

“Play Dough Economics is the best single economic education curriculum I have used during my career,” states Dr. John Hall, an Associate Professor at Missouri State University. “It is comprehensive, teacher friendly, activity-oriented, highly motivating, and fun! The explanations of economic concepts are excellent and it is cost effective. Even though it was written for K-8 students, I have found Play Dough Economics to be very valuable beyond the 8th grade. I have used it in my college classes and worked with many high school teachers who use it with their students. Whenever and wherever I use Play dough Economics it is a hit.”

Play Dough, a childhood toy, bit of nostalgia, stress reliever, and educational tool. Who would have guessed?

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