Kids & Teens
Cobblestone American History and Current Events for Kids and Children

Cobblestone American History and Current Events for Kids and Children May/June 2019

COBBLESTONE is the award-winning and respected leader in the study of American history for young people. COBBLESTONE tells America’s story through a unique mix of captivating articles, lively graphics, historical photographs, primary sources, and maps. Each themed-issue examines historical events in detail making them exciting and relevant to today. A must-have for every history classroom and media center. Grades 5-9.

United States
Cricket Media, Inc.
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9 Issues

in this issue

6 min.
from barter to bitcoin

We all rely on money to pay for the things we need and want. But what is money, and how did it evolve? A basic definition is “the official currency, coins, and paper notes issued by a government.” People know the value of the money they use—it appears right on the coins and paper notes. And people have confidence that the money will hold its value because their government backs it as its legal tender. But it wasn’t always like that. Thousands of years ago, the concept of money barely existed. Before money became widely accepted as a form of payment, how did people buy the things they needed? Well, they didn’t. People bartered. Bartering is trading goods or services without the exchange of money. So, a family that had a goat…

1 min.
digital money

Cryptocurrencies have introduced a whole new way to think about money. In 2009, a mystery person or persons using the name Satoshi Nakamoto introduced bitcoins. They were the first of many cryptocurrencies. Cryptocurrencies rely on a complex series of unregulated digital transactions. There’s no physical currency to hold—no coins or notes. There’s no central authority backing them up. They are computer files that are sent among users. A record of the transactions is kept in a blockchain, a networked computer tracking system. Although cryptocurrencies jumped in value a couple of years ago, their complex nature has prevented them from being widely adopted. —G.G.…

2 min.
the gold standard

Rough chunks of gold have been a popular means of exchange since ancient times. Ancient peoples prized the shiny metal for its beauty and its rarity. Gold also is unusually durable. Unlike silver, another precious metal, it never tarnishes. Over time, small amounts of gold grew to have a high value. Using gold, traders could complete their business without having to transport heavy bags of money. Gold had one big drawback as a means of exchange. Before a rough lump of gold could be accepted as payment, its exact worth had to be determined. Weighing and checking each nugget for purity required time and patience. Then, around 550 b.c.e. the kingdom of Lydia, an area in present-day Turkey, produced the first gold coin. It was a piece of gold that had…

6 min.
ways to pay

Cold, hard cash used to be the most accepted way to pay for goods and services. But it grew awkward to carry around heavy bags of coins. It also became dangerous. If money is stolen or lost, its value transfers to the new holder. As people accumulated large amounts of money, they wanted to keep it safe until they needed it. Banks were established to offer this service. Today, banks do much more than simply keep money safe. They are the backbone to providing “ways to pay” for consumers. A person who has a relationship with a bank can write checks and use a debit card. Checks, debit cards, and credit cards all are common ways to make purchases without requiring money to be exchanged at the actual time of purchase.…

1 min.
what's on my statement?

Understanding how credit cards work and how to read a credit card statement can help consumers make smart choices. Credit card companies send out monthly statements to their cardholders. A statement contains a rundown of activity on the card. It shows the previous balance on the card. It notes the total payments and credits and the total purchases and debits. It lists any fees, interest, or cash advances. The statement adds and subtracts each of those items to calculate a new balance for the month. The new balance is what the cardholder owes. In 2009, Congress passed the Credit CARD (Card Accountability Responsibility and Disclosure) Act. It was enacted to stop hidden and abusive practices by credit card issuers. Issuers had not always been up front about their policies. They changed interest…

4 min.
you can bank on banks

Put money in a piggy bank, and it sits there. Put that money in a banking account, and it goes to work. To learn more, COBBLESTONE spoke with Ann-Marie La Porta. She’s a vice president and senior advisor in the Private Banking department at Huntington National Bank in Cleveland, Ohio. What is a bank? A bank is where you put your money so it remains safe. And it’s a place where you can earn money on your money. How does that work? Customers who have accounts are actually lending the bank their money. We thank them by paying them interest on their account. And then we turn around and lend that money to someone else. How does that help the community? Other people can then borrow money to buy a house or a car, make a…