So I do use my blog as a store for useful resources and this is another one which could be of use when teaching about how companies control markets. This is about the worthlessness of diamonds and how big businesses have made them seem valuable.
I found these types of article are good teaching resources for FE students as they give them a real story to focus on and they are really useful to get a discussion going which is a useful way of encouraging learning to transition from the lower levels of the all important Bloom’s taxonomy up to the higher domains.
They are short – FE students love short, they can digest short much more easily and maintaining focus on short rather than long is always easier
They are relevant – FE students respond well to relevant and they’ve all heard of diamonds. Even though this article is dated there are more up to date videos and articles which say the same thing, it’s an historic account of how a market was moulded and hasn’t really changed since.
They offer chances to embed other things… in this instance sustainability – you could talk about how consumers are becoming more aware of the sourcing of gem stones and unethical practices, talk about blood diamonds, use bits of the film, it’s interesting stuff and quite gripping and the more interesting, relevant and gripping it is the better.
You can introduce some really good tasks and activities trying to trace sources of diamonds, looking to see which high street jewellers source from where… that kind of adds some geographical and cultural elements to your teaching and opens up for a bit of globalisation and also gives opportunity to look at comparative advantage and how these countries where diamonds are found are developing economically as a result of the trade… or not.
You could introduce some debate about the treatment of diamond industry workers.
Here’s a useful article on the Cullinan Diamond, the largest diamond ever mined and where it is now
Here’s a more academic article to use for more able students to help with differentiation of a lesson:
You can take a simple article like this and build a lesson or extension activity onto it or you could simply use it to help illustrate a point.