Teaching students about the providers of goods and services helps explain how communities function. Most students do not understand the intricacies of the goods and services complex in their community. This project will help them to better understand not only who the providers of goods and services are but also what their benefit is to the community. Use this school project to explore the different providers in your community, and share what the students learn with the rest of the school and community in a fair at the end of the project.

Determine Goods and Service

Review the different types of goods and services that exist in communities, such as merchants, doctors, teachers and government workers. Ask students to define goods and services and to provide examples. This initial discussion sets the tone for the remainder of the project, so it is important that students have a good understanding of the difference between goods and services.

Goods

Goods are tangible items that people need or want. Establish what types of goods you want to research. Assign students to groups of two or three and give them a specific good to research. These students will delve into the importance of the good, who provides the good and whether it is a need or a want. Goods could include food, clothing and vehicles. After gathering information on the good, the students decide how to share their information in a visual presentation. Display boards, posters, or fliers are all examples of ways students can show the information they have learned.

Services

Services include professional activities and performance of work for others. Talk about the differences between public and private services. Identify important public service providers, such as firefighters, police officers, trash collectors and other government workers. Recognize the private service providers, such as hair stylists, insurance companies and cell phone providers. Assign specific services to each group, including both private and public services. Students evaluate the importance of each of the providers and the specific providers within their own community. Have students create a visual display to use at the community fair at the end of the project.

Community Fair

Reflect once again on the importance and differences of the providers of goods and services. Have students look at all of the final displays and encourage groups to discuss what they learned with each other. Include all of the displays for a community gathering, where students invite the school, family, friends and members of the community to come and share the project.