Economics is usually a 1/2 credit, semester-long class taught during senior year in high school. Sometimes homeschoolers want to provide a full 1 credit class on economics, or want to prepare for the AP exams in economics. There are a lot of different ways to cover economics as a homeschooler. Here are some options you might consider.
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Fast and Easy Economics
Not everything in high school has to be hard. Sometimes you can do things the easy way. Remember when we were in high school? At my public school, there were definitely some classes that we fondly referred to as "underwater basket weaving" because they were so easy. At my high school, that's what our economics class was like. We learned supply and demand and how to fill out the 1040EZ, and that was it! Of course I was completely unprepared for economics in college, and rumor has it that I almost failed Econ in college for that reason. (The rumor is "mostly true" because I actually got a 0.7 my first time through the class. When I took it again, I was tutored by an awesome guy named Matt Binz, and earned a 3.7 the second time around. And no, that's NOT why I married him!)
If you want to teach high school homeschool economics the low-stress, simple, good-enough way, consider this option. Use the Whatever Happened to Penny Candy Book plus the coordinating workbook. Presto! 1/2 credit of high school economics. This material is "Free Market Austrian Economics" for those who know or care.
Book Whatever Happened to Penny Candy? A Fast, Clear, and Fun Explanation of the Economics You Need For Success in Your Career, Business, and Investments
Workbook A Bluestocking Guide to Economics by Jane Williams
Just a Little More Economics
If you want to beef it up a little, you might want to add the Basic Economics class from The Great Courses. That's a simple college level lecture that can help bring it up to a more challenging level but without making it a hard class.
Economics, 3rd Edition by Professor Timothy Taylor M.Econ. of Macalester College by The Great Courses
If you wanted to beef it up a little more, and make it even more challenging, you might consider using Economics in One Lesson, by Hazlitt. I found the book as a free PDF download on the Mises.org website
, or you can purchase it on Amazon.
Economics in One Lesson: The Shortest and Surest Way to Understand Basic Economics by Henry Hazlitt
Thorough and Detailed Economics
If you want to teach economics in a challenging, thorough, literature-rich way, then I love to suggest Economics in a Box! This might be a semester of year-long course, depending on how many resources you use or add.
Economics in a Box: Understanding the Economic Ideas That Shape Our World
Economics in a box includes books, DVDs, and CDs, and is taught from a Christian perspective. Again, this material is "Free Market Austrian Economics" for those who know what that means or care deeply about economics. You can read the syllabus here
, if you are interested. These are the key ingredients of Economics in a box:
Common Sense Economics by Gwartney, Stroup, Lee and Ferrarini
Money, Greed, and God by Jay Richards
Whatever Happened to Penny Candy by Richard Maybury
The Law by Frederic Bastiat
DVDs with John Stossel
Acton Media DVD
The Common Sense Reader CD from the Heritage Foundation
Love Disclaimer: Big Mama Pride Warning Here! My son worked on the book Money, Greed and God by Jay Richards
, providing some research, and he is mentioned in the Acknowledgments. Be aware that I love my son, and so therefore I love this book!
Honors Level Economics
If you want to cover a very rigorous, honors-level, full credit Economics course, consider getting Sonlight Curriculum Economics Program
, or Thinkwell Economics
or Thinkwell Economics for Homeschool Students
. I haven't used this set myself, or seen a copy, so I can't comment on the economics perspective or philosophy of the class. I have heard great reports, and I know that it is a full credit class that will prepare students for the AP exams in Micro and Macro Economics.
Delight Directed Economics
I homeschooled two boys. My older son did the bare minimum, and had a 1/2 credit homeschool economics class based mostly on Economics by The Great Courses
. My younger son loved economics more than anything, and ended up with a whole credit of economics every year, using almost every resource known to man, it seems. He had a credit of economics, a credit of microeconomics, and a credit of macroeconomics. It was all delight directed learning. He loved the resources at Discovery Institute
where he first met Jay Richards, attended Acton University
during summer breaks, and presented at the Westerm Economic Association International Conferences
as a high school student. If your child loves a subject, follow their interests in delight directed learning - even if you find it annoying. (Even when you failed the subject in college, like I did.) Try to find a mentor, if you can. And for goodness sake, include delight directed learning on the transcript! Just because they love something doesn't mean it can't be on the high school transcript. Loving it just means you can give them an "A" in the class!