The Great Depression
History holds many economic lessons. The Great Depression, in particular, is an event that provides the opportunity to teach and learn a great deal about economics—whether you’re studying the economic reasons that the Depression took place, the factors that helped it come to an end, or the impact on Americans who lived through it. This curriculum is designed to provide teachers with economic lessons that they can share with their students to help them understand this significant experience in U.S. history.
Go to the Great Depression Lesson Plans now.
We have launched the Great Depression lessons as online modules.
Learn more about the modules.
Economic Episodes in American History: The Great Depression
David Wheelock, vice president and deputy director of Research, gave a presentation on “The Great Depression” on July 11, 2013, as part of an economic education workshop at the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.
Watch videos of the presentation
Great Depression Q&A
St. Louis Fed Economist Dave Wheelock is an expert on the economics of the Great Depression. He sat down recently to answer some questions about parallels between the Great Depression and the current recession.
The Great Depression Curriculum Interview Series
Byron and Sam were entering the workforce when the Great Depression began. Margaret was 12 and lived on a farm. Raymond and Anna Marie were young children.
Listen to their stories
Potato: A Tale from the Great Depression
Looking for a Great Depression teaching tool for younger children? This lesson for 7- to 9-year-olds helps students differentiate between goods, services, barter, and money. Students are led through several rounds of a barter activity that incorporates math skills.
See the lesson plan | See all St. Louis Fed lesson plans for grades 3-5
Like what you see on the Great Depression Curriculum web site? Find a wealth of other economics and personal finance education materials on the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis Education Resources site.