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I love teaching about free trade because it’s so current, relevant, and easily applicable to students. And since I’m all about student engagement, seeing students excitedly showing their friends the political cartoon they’re creating about free trade makes me smile. Students can be so creative, witty, and thoughtful when we give them the opportunity- and making political cartoons is a beautiful way to disguise some critical thinking.
This lesson will teach your students all about free trade and the global economy. The lesson starts off with a short, engaging lecture which defines terms and helps frame the topic. This lecture starts with an engaging activity and is interspersed with critical thinking and pair-sharing opportunities throughout. Then, students will read about the 4 main types of trade barriers countries use against one another. They will research historic or current examples using a chart. Next, students get to research the pros and cons of free trade. Finally, they use all of this newfound knowledge to form their own opinions about free trade and communicate their argument through designing a political cartoon!
What to Expect:
I teach this lesson in one block period of 90 minutes and then have students finish the political cartoon at home. The lesson can easily be adjusted for several shorter class periods.
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