Teaching Business & Marketing with Parks and Recreation

For a show ostensibly about a small town parks department, Parks and Recreation has a lot to say about business and marketing. From Capitalism 101 to consumer choice, Leslie Knope and her crew have you covered. Check out some of ClassHook’s favorite clips to see if this crowd-pleasing show could help spice up your lesson on business and marketing:

Making a Commercial

What if your marketing strategy was no marketing? Inject some humor into your lesson with this commercial from Ron Swanson, which is anything but heavy handed.

This commercial for the fictional Paunch Burger is as aggressive as Ron Swanson is passive. Let students debate the two extremes of these marketing styles!

Consumer Choice

Leslie is frustrated when local businesses start upsizing their soda options. This short clip is a good example of how some marketing strategies try to manipulate consumer choice.



For better or for worse, the US economy is driven by capitalism, making it essential for any student of business to understand. Leslie and Ron’s debate about the merits of a capitalist economy could be a good way to get students thinking critically about the pros and cons of this system.


How do entrepreneurs generate new ideas? Tom Haverford is relentless in his quest to find the next great idea.

Do you have a favorite educational moment from Parks and Recreation, or another favorite TV show? Submit it to us here!

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