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This paper provides a framework for understanding the economic effects of automation and artificial intelligence (AI). First, it reviews how physical capital interacts with labor in the context of automation and AI. Next, it discusses recent advances in AI and potential economic outcomes such as job market polarization and income inequality. It then describes the role education has played in previous economic transitions and the role it will likely play as technology advances. Finally, the paper identifies key economic concepts and teaching resources that social studies educators can integrate into their instruction to help students understand the economic effects of automation and AI.