Help Your Students Discover the Impact of Behavior on Financial Decision-Making with New Behavioral Economics Lessons from Econ Essentials

In these times of economic uncertainty, providing students with resources that help them understand the impact of outside forces on the economy can be empowering.  Econ Essentials, developed in partnership with CME Group, offers students digital resources that are accessible from anywhere to help them understand basic economic principles and explore how our own behavioral tendencies influence the larger economy. 

The Behavioral Economics Lessons are designed for students in grades 9-12.  Each lesson includes a companion video, challenge activity and digital lesson bundle that students can work through at their own pace.  The grab-and-go presentations included with each bundle can also be downloaded and added to your daily virtual learning resources.  Each of the four lessons in the series build on one another and serve to provide students with a digestible introduction to the subject through scenarios, questions, discussions and challenges. 

In the first lesson bundle – Behavioral Economics 101—students are introduced to the two types of decision-makers: ‘humans’ and ‘econs’. The Challenge Activity encourages students to really think about their behaviors to determine how rational their choices are.  The current virtual learning environment presents a perfect opportunity for high school students to examine their own behaviors and decisions over the course of a week, and the activity just requires a 10-15 minute commitment each day. 

Lesson two, Loss Aversion and Endowment Effect, may sound intimidating, but the material is explained in a way that students will find clear – and interesting!  It’s all about the way economists have defined how our preferences related to gains and losses impact how we spend our money. 

The two-minute companion video in Lesson 3, How We are Affected by Othersincludes great visuals to help drive home how external factors and the behaviors of others impact our choices.  This lesson is especially timely, as students may be witnessing their families or those in their communities making economic choices differently based on tremendous influence from other people and organizations 

The final and newest lesson in the series provides insight into how price affects our economic decisions through concepts like the anchoring principle and freemiums.  How We Are Affected by Price weighs the impact of our preferences versus pricingand arms students with the information they need to make more informed buying decisions. Through  

It’s safe to say that many of us are very focused on the ways in which our “new normal” will impact the economy.  Encouraging students to become more knowledgeable about the economy will support them in feeling more empowered and ultimately provide a greater sense of control over their own personal situations.  With its self-paced modules, videos and digital lesson bundles, Econ Essentials is a one-stop solution to expanding your virtual learning toolkit to help students gather information that will benefit them well into the future. 

We are excited to share more information about these concepts on Twitter @DiscoveryEd on April 17th for Econ Exploration Day! We will be highlighting these helpful resources and sharing CME Group’s Chief Economist, Blue Putnam’s answers to pre-submitted economic questions! If you have a question you would like to have answered, submit it by email to by April 15th. Follow #EconExplorationDay to see the answer and learn more!  

Discover more about Discovery Education’s corporate and community partnerships and the COVID-19 student, educator, and family resources at and through Discovery Education Experience’s Corporate Education Partnerships channel. In response to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, Discovery Education is offering schools and school systems not currently using the company’s digital services free access to Discovery Education Experience. Schools accepting this offer will have access to Discovery Education’s dynamic K-12 learning platform and its ready-to-use digital lesson plans, activities, and standards-aligned resources through the remainder of the school year. In addition, Discovery Education is offering a suite of no cost resources for parents and caregivers called Daily DE that can be used at home. For more information, visit Discovery Education’s comprehensive Virtual Learning resource center dedicated to helping educators adapt their instruction to meet today’s needs.

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