You Are Here, 3-6
The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has developed a website to educate young American consumers about their rights when shopping. The website is set in a shopping mall. The site teaches kids how to be savvy consumers by demonstrating the benefits of competition, how advertising can influence buying decisions, and the rules and regulations in place in the US that many business people deal with. It also helps parents and teachers to help kids understand their role in the marketplace. The site offers fact sheets for parents and teachers covering advertising, marketing, and competition in more detail, along with ideas for related activities. The site features animated guides who help visitors navigate a virtual mall and interact with shopkeepers and other consumers. Kids can design and print advertisements for a shoe store, uncover suspicious claims in an ad, and guess the retail price of various candies based on their supply, demand, and production costs. One game that has players match the features of various cell phones with certain audiences illustrates the principles of target marketing; another allows visitors to compare sales pitches from three pizza joints as it explains competition. A short film playing at the cinema illustrates the history of the FTC. Consumers should note the information provided on this site is based on US legislation.

This free site uses interactive games and activities to teach kids aged 8-12 key consumer concepts. Teachers can use the site in classroom activities related to consumer economics, government, social studies, history, language arts, and other related topics.