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Women's History

Suffragist and labor leader Agnes Nestor | Zinn Education Project

Birth of a Rank-and-File Organizer

Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 7 pages. Writing activity for students to complete the narrative of women workers striking at a glove-making factory, exploring possible outcomes.
Themes: Labor, Organizing, Social Class, Women's History
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Daughter of Earth: Reading, Writing, and Social Class

Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. 7 pages. Students read a poignant excerpt from Agnes Smedley's novel, Daughter of Earth, and use it to think and write about how schooling—their own included—teaches lessons about social class.
Time Periods: 20th Century, Turn of the Century: 1900 - 1909
Themes: Education, Social Class, Women's History
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Exploring Women's Rights: The 1908 Textile Strike in a 1st-grade Class (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History

Exploring Women’s Rights: The 1908 Textile Strike in a 1st-grade Class

Teaching Activity. By Dale Weiss. 3 pages. A teacher's reflections about a curriculum unit on women's rights contextualizes the history of the feminist movement within the broader struggle of people working for greater equality in the United States.
Time Periods: 20th Century, Turn of the Century: 1900 - 1909
Themes: Labor, Organizing, Women's History
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Lawrence, 1912: The Singing Strike

Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. Role play on the 1912 Bread and Roses strike in Lawrence, Mass.
Time Periods: 20th Century, World War I: 1910 - 1919
Themes: Art & Music, Immigration, Labor, Organizing, Women's History
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Promoting Social Imagination Through Interior Monologues (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History

Promoting Social Imagination Through Interior Monologues

Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Linda Christensen. 3 pages. Empathy, or "social imagination," allows students to connect to "the other" with whom, on the surface, they may appear to have little in common.
Time Periods: All US History
Themes: Language Arts, Racism & Racial Identity, Slavery and Resistance, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements, Women's History
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Rethinking the U.S. Constitutional Convention: A Role Play | Zinn Education Project

Rethinking the U.S. Constitutional Convention: A Role Play

Teaching Activity. By Bob Peterson. 14 pages. A role play on the Constitutional Convention which brings to life the social forces active during and immediately following the American Revolution with focus on two key topics: suffrage and slavery. An elementary school adaptation of the Constitution Role Play by Bill Bigelow. Roles available in Spanish.
Time Periods: 18th Century, Revolution & Constitution: 1765 - 1799
Themes: Democracy & Citizenship, Laws & Citizen Rights, Native American, Slavery and Resistance, Women's History
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Salt of the Earth: Grounds Students in Hope

Teaching Activity. By S.J. Childs. The author describes how she introduces students to the classic 1953 film, Salt of the Earth, about a miners’ strike in New Mexico.
Time Periods: 20th Century, Cold War: 1945 - 1960, People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974
Themes: Labor, Latinx, Social Class, Women's History
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Susan B. Anthony and Elizabeth Cady Stanton | Zinn Education Project

Seneca Falls, 1848: Women Organize for Equality

Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. A role play allows students to examine issues of race and class when exploring both the accomplishments and limitations of the Seneca Falls Convention.
Time Periods: 19th Century, Early 19th Century: 1800 - 1849
Themes: Civil Rights Movements, Democracy & Citizenship, Laws & Citizen Rights, Organizing, Women's History
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Teaching SNCC: The Organization at the Heart of the Civil Rights Revolution

Teaching Activity. By Adam Sanchez. 24 pages. A series of role plays that explore the history and evolution of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee.
Time Periods: 20th Century, People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974, Post-Civil Rights Era: 1975 - 2000
Themes: African American, Civil Rights Movements, Democracy & Citizenship, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity, Social Class, Women's History
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Union Maids (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History

Union Maids

Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. Activity for students to write from the point of view of one of the women featured in the film Union Maids.
Themes: Art & Music, Labor, Organizing, Social Class, Women's History
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What We Don’t Learn About the Black Panther Party — but Should

Teaching Activity. By Adam Sanchez and Jesse Hagopian. 33 pages. A mixer role play that introduces students to the pivotal and largely untold history of the Black Panthers.
Time Periods: 20th Century, People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974, Post-Civil Rights Era: 1975 - 2000
Themes: African American, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity, Social Class, Women's History
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The Early Women’s Movement

Teaching Activity. By Gayle Olson-Raymer. Questions and teaching ideas for Chapter 6 of Voices of a People's History of the United States on the early women's movement, including their efforts for social, racial, and political equality.
Time Periods: 19th Century
Themes: Democracy & Citizenship, Laws & Citizen Rights, Women's History
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Speaking Out: Women, War and the Global Economy

Teaching Guide. By Jan Haaken, Ariel Ladum, et al. 2005. with DVD. Interactive lessons on the 1990s civil war in Sierra Leone and broader issues such as cross-cultural awareness, the global trade in diamonds and guns, and the effects of war on women.
Themes: Economics, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements, Women's History, World History/Global Studies
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Women, Gays, and Other Voices of Resistance

Teaching Activity. By Jack Bareilles. Questions and teaching ideas for Chapter 19 of Voices of a People's History of the United States on the emergence and legacy of the 1960s counterculture, as well as the movements it helped create.
Time Periods: 20th Century, People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974
Themes: Civil Rights Movements, Democracy & Citizenship, Laws & Citizen Rights, LGBTQ, Women's History
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Jetnil Kiiner Student Mural (Art by Jocelyn Ng and Aravapo Leo) | Zinn Education Project

Climate Change, Gender, and Nuclear Bombs

Article. By Bill Bigelow. From Rethinking Schools, Spring 2018. Gender is one of the crucial variables determining how the climate crisis affects us.
Time Periods: 20th Century, 21st Century
Themes: Climate Justice, Environment, Pacific Islander, Women's History
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The Truth About Helen Keller (Lesson) | Zinn Education Project

The Truth About Helen Keller

Article. By Ruth Shagoury. A review of children's picture books about the life of Helen Keller reveals the omission of any description of her active role in key social movements of the 20th century.
Time Periods: 20th Century, World War I: 1910 - 1919
Themes: Disability, Education, Women's History
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The Women Who Gave Us Christmas

Article. By William Loren Katz. 2010. The abolitionist influence on the history of Christmas celebrations in the United States.
Time Periods: 19th Century, Early 19th Century: 1800 - 1849
Themes: Slavery and Resistance, Women's History
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