Rutgers University Project on Economics and Children

EconKids Home Top 5 Books by Concept Markets and Competition

Top Five Books on Markets and Competition

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The Have a Good Day Cafe
Author: Frances Park & Ginger Park
Illustrator:  Katherine Potter
Publisher: Lee & Low Books
ISBN: 1-58430-171-6
Year: 2005
Flesch-Kinkaid Grade Level:  3.3

Concepts: competition, demand, supply, entrepreneur, producers, consumers

Summary: Early each morning Mike and his family drive to the city with their food cart. They sell bagels and orange juice for breakfast, hot dogs and pizza for lunch. Mike passes the time by drawing pictures, and Grandma sits in the shade, fanning herself and missing life back home in Korea.

One day two other food carts show up on the family's street corner. All summer long business dwindles away, and Mike's worried parents start thinking about giving up their cart. Now it's up to Mike, and Grandma, to find a way to bring back their customers.

Source of Summary: Publisher

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  Grandpa's Corner Store
Author and Illustrator:  DyAnne DiSalvo-Ryan 
Publisher: HarperCollins
ISBN: 0-688-16717-9
Year: 2000
Flesch-Kinkaid Grade Level:  3.3

Concepts: markets, competition, prices, producer

 Lucy loves spending time at her Grandpa's corner grocery, where neighbors depend on the personal service. But when construction begins on a giant supermarket around the corner, Lucy and Grandpa fear that Grandpa's shop will be put out of business and he'll have to move away.

Source of Summary:  Publisher Weekly Review

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  This is a Great Place for a Hot Dog Stand
Author and Illustrator:  Barney Saltzberg
Publisher:  Hyperion
ISBN: 0-7868-0007-4
Year: 1995
Flesch-Kinkaid Grade Level:  3.3

Concepts: markets, competition, producers, consumers, entrepreneurs

Summary:  Izzy, stuck on a factory assembly line, is lured by the great outdoors and the smell of hot dogs. He quits his job, builds a hot-dog cart, and sets out to find the perfect spot to start his business. He sets up shop on an empty city lot and soon things are booming, mostly due to Izzy's good business sense. Then Madame Moola Moo comes along. This millionaire maven wants to build a mall on the spot where Izzy's small shop now stands.

Source of Summary: School Library Journal Review

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  Mama Panya's Pancakes:  A Village Tale from Kenya
Author: Mary Chamberlin; Rich hamberlin
Illustrator: Julia Cairns
Publisher: Barefoot Books
ISBN: 1-84148-139-4
Year: 2005
Flesch-Kinkaid Grade Level:  3.8

Concepts: markets, scarcity

  Mama Panya and her son, Adika, are all ready for market day where Mama is planning on using her few coins to buy the ingredients to make pancakes for dinner. Adika is so excited that he can't help inviting all of their friends and neighbors.

Source of Summary: School Library Journal Review

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Title: The Caged Birds of Phnom Penh
Author: Frederick Lipp
Illustrator:  Ronald Himler
Publisher: Holiday House
ISBN: 0-8234-1534-1
Year: 2001
Flesch-Kinkaid Grade Level: 3.9

Concepts: markets, bargaining, scarcity, poverty, wants and needs

Summary: Although she has spent all of her life in Phnom Penh, eight-year-old Ary has heard stories about the green countryside where rice grows and where birds fly free. She dreams about escaping from the polluted city where she and her family live in poverty. One morning, she takes the money that she has earned by selling flowers and goes to the marketplace, intending to buy a bird from the bird lady's cage. According to custom, if the bird flies free, her wish will come true. She chooses one, holds it tight while she makes a wish for her family, and then releases it. The girl is bitterly disappointed when it circles overhead and then returns to perch on the woman's finger. Feeling as though she has been tricked, Ary consults her grandfather, who tells her that it is important not to pick just any bird when making wishes. She saves more money and watches the bird lady carefully. One day, she sees the woman putting a new bird in the cage. Ary picks this bird and watches it fly out of sight, knowing that some day her dreams will come true.

Source of Summary: School Library Journal

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