Mansa Musa: Inflation Then and Now

This Mansa Musa: Inflation Then and Now activity & project also includes:

Mansa Musa was so rich that his gifts of gold made the value of the metal drop throughout Africa. As he traveled from Mali to the Middle East to make hajj, his gifts were so extravagant, they devalued the gold already in circulation. While this generosity isn't commonplace today, scholars consider what causes the value of money to change using a case study with economic vocabulary worksheet and exercise that examines the role of inflation in today's dollars.  

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Instructional Ideas

  • Extend the conversation by creating discussion questions to connect Mansa Musa's distribution of gold during the hajj to the value of money
  • Ask young economists to research current prices of items included in activity
Classroom Considerations

  • 12th in a 23-part series from the Council for Economic Education exploring Middle School World History
Pros

  • Activity asks learners to consider what affects current prices
  • Reading profiles an African leader often overlooked 
Cons

  • Lesson plan does not accurately reflect the content of the activities; there is no auction
  • Activities do not make a clear connection between Mansa Musa and the economic concepts
Common Core