The office holds a garage sale to get rid of things they no longer need. Meanwhile, Dwight starts with a thumbtack and trades his way up to a telescope. However, he soon parts with the telescope when Jim offers him something of seemingly even more value. This is a great example of how consumer preferences differ and how trade can make two parties better off. It also illustrates how effective marketing can shift an individual's demand curve to the right.
Microeconomic Behavior: Underlying Principles (D01)
Tips on Teaching
For anyone that is new to teaching with media we highly recommend:
The following excerpt is from, How to Use Media to Teach and Learn Economics. The full module is found on Starting Point.
Using media requires that the instructor step outside of the traditional lecture method and facilitate learning by encouraging students to learn through the media. This approach works best when students are primed. If students are not adequately informed about what they are expected them to learn, they will struggle to make the connection between the learning objectives and the media that they are exposed to.
When to introduce media?
- Before learning the concept. Showing media before the discussion gives students an image to which they can compare the topics under discussion. This approach allows quick reference to easily recalled examples. Schwartz and Bransford (1998) show that demonstrations focused on contrasting cases help students achieve expert-like differentiation. In addition, Schwartz and Martin (2004) found that carefully-prepared demonstrations "help students generate the types of knowledge that are likely to help them learn" from subsequent lectures.
- After a brief introduction but before learning the concept. This method provides students with a brief capsule of what the media is about and what to look for -- helping to focus attention while watching the media.
- After learning the concept. Showing media after describing a theory or concept allows the instructor to use the scenes as a case study. This approach helps students develop their analytical skills in applying what they are learning.
- Before and after. Repeating the media is especially helpful when trying to develop student understanding of complex topics. Utilize the media before the discussion to give students an anchor. Guide students through a description or discussion of the topics. Rerun the media as a case study and ask students to analyze what they see using the theories and concepts just discussed. Also punctuate the rerun with an active discussion by asking students to call out the concepts they see in the scenes. This method helps to reinforce what they have just learned.
Two more tips if you are new to this method:
- Be prepared. Technology does not work 100% of the time so have a back up plan. If the media equipment does not work, go to plan B and continue on with your class without missing a beat.
- Evaluate student understanding. Students respond to incentives. If you require them to write a reaction paper, take a quiz, or place questions on your exams that relate to the media content they will pay more attention and learn more in the process.