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Business Education | High School

4 Best International Business Lesson Plans for High School

October 13th, 2021 | 7 min. read

Bri Stauffer

Bri Stauffer

For nearly 10 years, Bri has focused on creating content to address the questions and concerns educators have about teaching classes, preparing students for certifications, and making the most of the AES curriculum system.

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If you’re like most high school business education teachers, you’ve probably spent some time searching for international business lesson plans. It can be a niche topic, after all, and many teachers approach AES frustrated that they can't find the right providers to fit their classrooms. 

But this is essential material for future businesspeople to learn, and these days a textbook isn't going to cut it. With how frequently the business world and international relations change, your textbook is probably already obsolete!

To answer this need, we've put together a list of relevant, engaging, and current lessons to help your students understand international business.

In this article, you'll discover four of the best places to find lesson plans and activities to teach international business:

  1. Knowledge@Wharton High School
  2. Teachers Pay Teachers
  3. Academy of International Business
  4. Institute for International Business

By the end of this article, you'll have enough of an understanding of each of these resources to use the ones that fit best with your class. 

1. Knowledge@Wharton High School


Knowledge@Wharton High School (KWHS) is one of the best resources for business education topics in the world. You may even recognize the name from our list of marketing lesson plans.

KWHS is part of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, and its mission is to help educators across the country teach business and personal finance. With this focus, KWHS has five lesson plans for subjects under National Business Education Association (NBEA) standards.

Their international business lessons cover three major areas, which you can register with KWHS to access:

Each section coincides with an NBEA standard under the international business category. With that in mind, you know all of these resources cover at least some NBEA standards.

The downside to these resources is that they were added to the website in 2011. You may need to review some of the additional resources they include to ensure you don’t teach outdated or incorrect information.

Still, you can use these lesson plans as a foundation and make adjustments yourself whenever necessary!

2. Teachers Pay Teachers


Teachers Pay Teachers (TpT) is an online marketplace community where teachers can share, sell, and buy resources from each other. TpT has an excellent selection of international business lesson plans and activities for a range of grade levels.

Among these products you’ll find lesson plans, PowerPoints, rubrics, worksheets, activities, project ideas, and many other effective resources to help you teach international business.

However, there can be both benefits and drawbacks to this wealth of material that TpT has available. On one hand, you'll have no shortage of materials and options to choose from. On the other hand, you'll probably spend a lot of time finding the right products for you. 

It helps that you can sort these resources by grade level, price, and other criteria to find the content that best fits your classroom. 

Another great thing about TpT is that teachers add new resources regularly, so you will always have something new!

Some of the best international business resources on TpT are:

3. Academy of International Business


The Academy of International Business (AIB) is a non-profit organization dedicated to improving research and education when it comes to international business. It accomplishes this mission by working with policy leaders and ensuring teachers have access to quality resources. 

AIB has a number of ideal resources for business education teachers. Their affiliated website even has a dedicated course content area with four sections:

Textbook Publishers

The textbook publishers section provides more information on the various textbook publishers AIB works with, some of which specialize in business-related subjects. 

This section is more specific for higher education, so it’s not relevant for most high school business teachers (unless you teach advanced placement electives).

Video Depositories

The video depositories section includes eight websites where you can find videos and multimedia content related to international business.

The AIB gives a small description of each resource to give you an idea of whether it’s relevant to you and your students.

Case Depositories

The case depositories section has a list of 14 websites with case studies related to international business strategies.

If you haven’t used a case study to teach before, now is the perfect time to try it out! In a nutshell, you start a class by talking about an international business topic and illustrate by using the case study as an example.

Cases are the best way to show real-life examples of what you are talking about in the classroom.

Exercises & Simulations

The exercises & simulations section links to 43 interactive exercises, activities, games, and simulations you can use to reinforce international business concepts.

These resources differ in format and cost, but some are free if you don’t have much spending room in your class budget. Like Teachers Pay Teachers, however, with all the options, you’ll spend a lot of time picking a few resources to use.

AIB also periodically reviews each resource they have on their site. That way you can be confident in every resource’s accuracy and relevance to your international business lessons.

4. Institute for International Business


The Institute for International Business (IIB) is part of the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University.

The IIB provides resources for international business that teachers for multiple grade levels can use. The website’s resources are pedagogy-based--oftentimes pairing lesson plan outlines with videos of professors giving lectures on various business topics, or discussing different approaches to teaching international business.

Some videos and lesson plans from IIB's CIBER list include:

  • Business and Trade in China
  • Entrepreneurship in Cuba
  • Mapping the Global Economy
  • Women's Empowerment in Ghana
  • And more. 

These resources are probably best used as supplements to teach students interesting facts about trade and culture within other countries. At the very least, watching and learning from these professors may spark some ideas for your own lessons.

New videos are added each year, so there will always be new ideas for you to try in your classroom!

Facing Other Challenges as a Business Teacher?

International business is a critical subject when it comes to business education. After all, how can a business hope to succeed if it doesn't take into account the politics and economies of other countries? This makes it even more frustrating that such important material is so difficult to find online.

In this article, however, you've discovered a few of the best resources out there for providing international business material. Each of these websites can go a long way toward getting your classes--and your students--where they need to be. 

But as a business teacher, you face no shortage of other challenges. Whether it be a changing world or a changing student body, learning to adapt your business class to the modern age is crucial to your success. 

If you're facing difficulties as a business teacher, check out our guide on Five Common Challenges for Business Education Teachers and How to Overcome Them. This guide discusses several troubles unique to business education teachers, and how you can overcome them in your classroom. 

Overcome Your Biggest Challenges as a Business Teacher