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Erin Yetter, economic education specialist at the Louisville Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, poses with some of the teachers who created hats as part of her lesson, “The Berenstain Bears: Old Hat, New Hat.”
At the 52nd Annual Financial Literacy and Economic Education Conference in Baltimore on Oct. 5, 2013, Erin Yetter, economic education specialist at the Louisville Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, provided professional training for about 35 teachers, with the goal of enhancing economic and personal finance education.
The St. Louis Fed’s Economic Education team emphasizes active-learning techniques, in which teachers participate in lessons to experience them as their students would. To that end, through a lesson titled, “The Berenstain Bears: Old Hat, New Hat,” Yetter taught teachers—acting as the first- through third-grade student target audience—about choice and preferences.
Through “Old Hat, New Hat,” the teachers learned about a bear who sorts through many different hats to find one he likes. They then applied key concepts from the lesson to the story about the bear and created hats as a way to discuss their own choices and preferences with the group.
At the Baltimore conference, Yetter also provided a professional development workshop for teachers. The workshop was titled, “The Invisible Paw: Teaching Economics Using the Berenstain Bears.”