October 11, 2015
By Laura Higgins

Lesson plan

One, Two, Three Resources!

Download lesson plan

Students will be able to define and compare natural, capital, and human resources and identify those used by the Ox-Cart Man to produce his goods.

(10 minutes)
  • Begin the lesson by asking the students if they know what a resource is. Call on a few students who want to make educated guesses.
  • After some discussion, define ResourceAs a thing we use to get or make what we need.
  • Explain that there are different kinds of resources that help our community flourish: natural resources, capital resources, and human resources.
  • Ask your class if anyone can guess what a natural resource is. After a few answers, explain that a Natural resourceIs a material or substance that comes from nature, and is used to produce a good or product. Give your class some examples of natural resources. For example: Trees, water, land, rocks, etc.
  • Challenge your students to define a capital resource. After some guessing, define a Capital resourceAs a thing that's made and used to produce other goods and services. Give your class some examples of capital resources. For example: Tools, buildings, machines, equipment, etc.
  • Finally, ask your class what a human resource is. Define Human resourceAs the people and effort used to produce goods and services. Give your class some examples of human resources. For example: Doctors, cashiers, farmers, factory workers, etc.
  • Explain that today, the class will be listening to a story about a man whose family uses all three kinds of resources to create many products.
(15 minutes)
  • Read the story Ox-Cart ManAloud to your class, stopping when the ox-cart man reaches Portsmouth Market.
  • Stop at the mention of each product, and identify it as a natural, human, or capital resource.
  • Ask the students some comprehension questions. For example: Why do you think the Ox-Cart man sold the ox and cart? Why did he buy things like the knife and the embroidery needle?
  • Finish reading the book.
(10 minutes)
  • Create a four-column chart on the whiteboard, or using an interactive whiteboard, document camera, or projector.
  • Label the columns, in this order: Product, Natural Resources, Capital Resources, and Human Resources.
  • Ask a student to choose a product that the Ox-Cart man sold at Portsmouth Market.
  • Guide them through brainstorming the resources the Ox-Cart man used to create that product. List those resources in their appropriate columns on the chart.
(15 minutes)
  • Have the students, individually or in groups, create a chart like the one displayed to the class. Instruct them to add 4 more products from the book, along with the resources used to create them.
  • Instruct each group (or student) share one of their entries with the class.
  • Enrichment:Challenge advanced students to add a modern-day equivalent of one of the Ox-Cart Man's products to their charts.
  • Support:Have students who are struggling focus on the products that are most explicitly described in the story for their charts. Alternatively, you can sit down with these students in a small group, and do a few more examples together. Be sure to scaffold each answer with WhyIt belongs in the category that it does.
(5 minutes)
  • To assess understanding, circulate around the room as the students are working and ask questions about the entries on their charts.
(5 minutes)
  • Have volunteers define each of the vocabulary terms for the class.
  • Remind the children that items are produced using a combination of all three resources.

Add to collection

Create new collection

Create new collection

New Collection


How likely are you to recommend Education.com to your friends and colleagues?

Not at all likely
Extremely likely

What could we do to improve Education.com?

Please note: Use the Contact Us link at the bottom of our website for account-specific questions or issues.

What would make you love Education.com?

What is your favorite part about Education.com?