030: Kim Holder on Rockonomix and Teaching Economics Through the Lens of Sport, Music and Movies
Kim Holder is founder of Rockonomix and is an economics educator from the University of Western Georgia and teaches principles of macro and micro. Kim is passionate about economics, music, media, pop-culture and sports and loves using technology and social media in the classroom to get her students excited about learning. Kim is founder of Rockonomix, an inter-university contest held in the USA that encourages students to compose economic-themed lyrics to a popular song.
- how Kim Holder uses music to assess her students taking micro and macro classes.
- about Kim’s passion for economics and how she uses sports to explain economic concepts.
- how you can become an ‘Economic Rockstar’ in the annual Rockonomix contest.
- how to motivate students to study economics.
- how selfies and memes can make students aware of economics around them.
- about Kim’s decision to study economics because of true love.
- about Kim’s summer course ‘Economics Is Everywhere’ which introduces you to micro and macro, as well as personal finance.
- about the Centre for Economic Education at University of West Georgia and how it is for the wider community and not just for students.
- how K-12 teachers can avail of the workshops put on by the Centre for Economic Education at University of West Georgia.
- about Pop Econ and why more should be done to introduce it to students at a principles of micro and macro level.
- why students should be pushed to seek out economic themes in movies.
- how to use Twitter for the classroom and the best practices to communicate with students.
- what Kim’s top 3 movies are that contain economic themes.
- the importance of financial literacy for students who are faced with taking out college loans.
- how Kim Holder escaped poverty through education.
In this interview, Kim mentions and discusses: Microeconomics, macroeconomics, health economics, substitute goods, complementary goods, GDP and monetary indicators.
In this interview, Kim mentions and discusses: Kenneth Arrow, Dirk Mateer and Brian O’Roark.
- Kenneth Arrow
“Enjoy the journey”
People have a lot more potential than we give credit for. There’s just something small that’s holding them back. It might be money. It could be the absence of schools in the local area. It could be personal circumstances. Kim Holder.
Econ is very distinct from the other business disciplines because it’s more of a philosophy or a way to view the world than just a specific tool. Economics is a little bit business, a little bit social science, a little bit science. It has something of everything in it and that’s kind of my personality. Kim Holder.
The following is an excerpt taken from Kim Holder’s Rockonomix website. I couldn’t explain it better than the actual founder, Kim:
Many of today’s students arrive in class with headphones on, listening to the latest hit song or watching the newest viral video. They often question learning material that they can simply “Google” and struggle with applying textbook concepts to the world around them. As educators, we are continually struggling to find ways to reach each of these students by engaging them in the learning process. Rockonomix, a student-produced music video parody project, helps motivate student learning by using popular media to reinforce basic economic principles. Here is our story of how we brought Rockonomix to our students.
As a brand new lecturer in the Department of Economics at the University of West Georgia in the fall of 2010, I was faced with the daunting task of engaging new business students as well as those in the general population who were completing either their required economics sequence or part of the core requirements. I developed a number of activities designed to help students learn to “see” economics in their everyday lives in order to help solidify the concepts that we learned in our lectures and readings. These smaller projects helped prepare students for the end of semester finale known as Rockonomix, a group based project where students are asked to write new lyrics to a popular song and produce their own original music video.
Since my introductory courses tend to contain a mix of students with a variety of skill sets, majors and interest levels, this project allows each student the unique opportunity to highlight talents that are not readily apparent in the traditional classroom. In addition, student feedback at UWG has been overwhelmingly positive with many indicating that they now view the subject of economics in a different way, that the assignment motivated them to read their textbook and actually learn the material so that they could write their song lyrics, and that linking economic concepts to music helped them remember difficult key concepts.
To increase student interest and collaboration across campuses, we have created the National Rockonomix Contest. Currently in its second semester, the national competition allows students from different universities across the country to compete with each other for the best overall video. This additional level of interactivity has added a unique dimension to student submissions and pushed them to produce works that are truly amazing works of economic art!
Vote now for your favorite student music video.
Favorite Internet Resource:
- The Critical Critics: A website dedicated to the critical review of movies.
- St Louis Fed: The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis was established in 1914, after the creation of the Federal Reserve System in 1913.
Kim’s Top 3 Economic-Themed Movies:
- In Time
- Hunger Games
Where to find Kim: