Understanding the Economics Standards
for teachers in grades 6–8
Economics studies how people, acting as individuals or in groups, decide to use scarce resources
to satisfy wants.
This fundamental economic concept of scarcity is at the core of the discipline.
There are never enough natural resources, human resources, or capital resources (man-made
goods such as tools, equipment, machinery, factories) to produce everything society wants.
Therefore, choices must be made on what to produce, how to produce, and for whom to produce.
Choices must also be made at a personal level.
There never seems to be enough money or time
to have or to do everything one wants.
Economics is a way of thinking, a science of making choices.
Economists examine the decision-
making processes of individuals, businesses, markets, governments, and economies as a whole.
An understanding of economic principles helps people to:
Consider not only the short-term effects of a decision, but also its long-term effects and
possible unintended consequences;
See the connections between personal self-interest and societal goals in order to understand
how individual and social choices are made in the context of an economy;
Analyze how social goals, such as freedom, efficiency, and equity, impact public policies.
Because of increasing interdependence and globalization, everyone in the United States needs to
be aware of the issues in the global economy, their role in that system, and be able to respond to
changes so that they can effectively maintain or raise their standard of living.
Goal Statements for the Economics Standards:
Students will learn to examine the relationship between costs and benefits, and the values
associated with them.
Students will understand economic principles, whole economies, and the interactions
between different types of economies to comprehend the movement and exchange of
information, capital, and products across the globe.
Students will be able to assess the impact of market influences and governmental actions on
the economy in which they live.
Students will make personal economic choices and participate responsibly and effectively in
social decision making as citizens in an increasingly competitive and interdependent global
Delaware Economics Standards 6–8