Teaching Economics with Children’s Literature: Market Day


Introduction and Summary
Market Day, written and designed by Lois Ehlert, tells the story of a family preparing to take goods they have made and grown to the Market. The story starts off with a child going around to do their daily chores which include feeding the chickens corn, pulling up carrots, packing tomatoes, feeding the rooster, turkey, and goose and loading up the truck. The child reminds us, “Lock the gate tight so they [the animals] won’t get loose.”   The story uses very pretty folk art for the illustrations. The child goes on to say that the reason they go to the market is “to buy and to sell…” The artwork is amazing in this story!

Curriculum Connections
This book shows how people have to work to make money. In this book, the whole family helps with planting, growing, and harvesting food as well as making goods to sell at the market for profit. This family sells foods and goods, to make a living in order to buy items for themselves (VA Social Studies SOL 1.7).  This book also shows a great deal of artwork, and could be used to help inspire students to make their own artwork about jobs that people have and how and where they work.

Additional Resources
1. Market Day/Spanish Lesson Plan– This lesson plan has a great idea for doing your own Market Day in the classroom. Students will buy and sell goods (fruits, vegetables, and other food items) to each other. While they are doing this, they are also learning the Spanish name for each item and learning about the Open Air Markets that Latin America has.  Great use for buying and selling goods, multiculturialism, and learning about Latin America. This lesson plan has a heavy focus on incorporating Spanish, but it does use the book in the lesson plan.
2.Consumer and Producer Lesson Plan– The lesson plan provides activities for teaching about consumers and producers. It is very short and simple, but using the book Market Day in the lesson plan to explain and tie in the vocabulary words of “consumer” and “producer” would be beneficial.
3.  Farmer’s Market Coloring Page– This site provides several coloring sheets available about Farmer’s Markets. It even includes a sentence on each coloring page that simply explains why we have Farmer’s Markets, and what they sell there (fruits, vegetables, other food items). This is a great idea to encourage young students to go to Farmer’s Markets!

General Information
Market Day
Author: Lois Ehlert
Illustrator: Designed by Lois Ehlert
Publisher: Voyager Books, Harcourt, Inc.
Publication Date:2000
Pages: 36
Grade Range: K-2nd
ISBN: 978-0-15-2168209

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