Social Studies Through Children's Literature

Book Title: Alexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday

Author: Judith Viorst

Publisher and Date: Children's Publishing Division, 1978

Curriculum Developer: Andrea Fife

Summary: This story is about Alexander who received one dollar from his grandma. Throughout the story it shows how he spends and wastes his dollar in only one week. He wants to save his money but does not choose to do so. When one week has past the only thing he has to show for it is a dopey deck of cards, one-eyed bear and some candy already eaten. He does not have anything neat or worthwhile after spending it and this is when Alexander starts to realize the importance of using your money wisely.

Social Studies Relevance: This book would be a good introductory lesson to students about money and the issues that surround it. There are several different approaches and various directions I could take after reading this book to them. We can discuss and make budgets for the students, focus on supply and demand, inflation and deflation, profit, wages, etc. Everybody is affected by money, bartering or some sort of a trade system.

Grade Level Focus: 4th grade

Relationship to Social Studies State Core:

Lesson Plan 1

Lesson Plan 2

Lesson Plan 3

Lesson Plan 4