With the help of paper airplanes and chocolate, this lesson shows students a key aspect of the changes occurring at the workplace around the turn of the century: the attempted capture of workers—skill and knowledge by management. The changes in how workplaces were structured and work organized occurred at different paces in different industries and, in modified form, continue today. Systematizing and justifying the new management practices, Frederick Winslow Taylor contributed his name to our language. “Taylorism,” according to the dictionary, means “scientific management.” Students will gain a first-hand appreciation of the impact that “scientific management” had on the lives of working people and will acquire a theoretical understanding of the stages of Frederick Taylor’s scientific management.
The Power In Our Hands—Available for Download
This is one of the 16 lessons available from The Power In Our Hands. Other lessons available for individual download are:
Unit I: Basic Understandings
Unit II: Changes in the Workplace/”Scientific Management”
- Paper Airplane Simulation
- Free to Think, Talk, Listen, or Sing
- Modern Times
- “Taylorizing” Burgers: A Fantasy
Unit III: Defeats, Victories, Challenges
Unit IV: Our Own Recent Past
- It’s a Mystery—White Workers Against Black Workers
- Southern Tenant Farmers’ Union: Black and White Unite?
- 1934 West Coast Longshore Strike
- Union Maids
Unit V: Continuing Struggle
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