Organizing

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    • The 1934 West Coast Longshore Strike

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 20 pages.
      Students “become” several of the social groups who participated in the 1934 Longshore Workers Strike—some of whom had to answer the question, “Which side are you on?”

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Labor, Organizing, Social Class | Reading Levels: High School
    • 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.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Themes: Labor, Organizing, Social Class, Women's History | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • 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.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Turn of the Century: 1900 - 1909, 20th Century | Themes: Labor, Organizing, Women's History | Reading Levels: Grades Pre-K-2
    • The Homestead Strike

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 10 pages.
      This role play activity on the famous 1892 Homestead Strike, explores the possibility of solidarity among workers of very different backgrounds and at different levels in the workplace hierarchy.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Themes: Immigration, Labor, Organizing, Social Class | Reading Levels: High School
    • ‘If There Is No Struggle...’: Teaching a People’s History of the Abolition Movement

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. 16 pages.
      In this role play, students become members of the American Anti-Slavery Society, facing many of the real challenges to ending slavery.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Early 19th Century: 1800 - 1849, Civil War Era: 1850 - 1864, 19th Century | Themes: African American, Civil Rights Movements, Democracy & Citizenship, Laws & Citizen Rights, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity, Slavery | Reading Levels: Adult, Grades 6-8, High School
    • Labor Songs

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 7 pages.
      Students explore the power of songs to build solidarity and increase understanding. This is the final activity from Bigelow and Diamond’s labor history book, The Power in Our Hands, and draws on the other lessons.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Themes: Art & Music, Labor, Organizing, Social Class | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • Lawrence, 1912: The Singing Strike

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 18 pages.
      Role play on the 1912 Bread and Roses strike in Lawrence, Mass.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: World War I: 1910 - 1919, 20th Century | Themes: Art & Music, Immigration, Labor, Organizing, Women's History | Reading Levels: High School
    • Organic Goodie Simulation

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 7 pages.
      Lesson engages students in a lively simulation that helps them experience some of the pressures that lead workers to organize.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Themes: Economics, Labor, Organizing, Social Class | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • Pump Up the Blowouts: Reflections on the 40th Anniversary of the Chicano/a School Blowouts (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Pump Up the Blowouts: Reflections on the 40th Anniversary of the Chicano/a School Blowouts

    • Teaching Activity. By Gilda L. Ochoa. 5 pages.
      Reflections on teaching students about the 1968 walkouts by Chicano students in California.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974, 20th Century | Themes: Civil Rights Movements, Education, Latino, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: High School
    • "A School Year Like No Other": Eyes on the Prize: "Fighting Back: 1957-1962"

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. 7 pages.
      A companion lesson to the Eyes on the Prize segment on school integration.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974, 20th Century | Themes: African American, Civil Rights Movements, Education, Laws & Citizen Rights, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • Seneca Falls, 1848: Women Organize for Equality

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow. 17 pages.
      A role play allows students to examine issues of race and class when exploring both the accomplishments and limitations of the Seneca Falls Convention.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Early 19th Century: 1800 - 1849, 19th Century | Themes: Civil Rights Movements, Democracy & Citizenship, Laws & Citizen Rights, Organizing, Women's History | Reading Levels: High School
    • Shutdown!—Confronting Plant Closures

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 14 pages.
      In this role play activity, students assume the roles of union members and attempt to figure out how to respond to a threatened plant closure.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Themes: Economics, Labor, Organizing, Social Class | Reading Levels: High School
    • Southern Tenant Farmers' Union: Black and White Unite?

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 12 pages.
      Role play on farm labor organizing in the 1930s shows how racism had to be challenged to create effective worker alliances.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: African American, Labor, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: High School
    • Line of demonstrators at Standing Rock. Image: Barbara Miner | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Standing with Standing Rock: A Role Play on the Dakota Access Pipeline

    • Teaching activity by Ursula Wolfe-Rocca, Bill Bigelow, and Andrew Duden. Article by Ursula Wolfe-Rocca. 15 pages.
      A role play that helps students recognize the issues at stake in the historic struggle of the Standing Rock Sioux to block construction of the Dakota Access oil pipeline.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: 2001 - Present, 21st Century | Themes: Environment & Food, Imperialism, Native American, Organizing |
    • Stenciling Dissent: A Student Project Draws on the Language of the Streets (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Stenciling Dissent: A Student Project Draws on the Language of the Streets

    • Teaching Activity. By Andrew Reed. 5 pages.
      Teaching activity connects students to history of art as a means of protest and gives them opportunity and skills to create their own stencil with a powerful message.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: All US History | Themes: Art & Music, Civil Rights Movements, Laws & Citizen Rights, Organizing |
    • Stepping into Selma: Voting Rights History and Legacy Today (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Stepping into Selma: Voting Rights History and Legacy Today

    • Teaching Activity. Teaching for Change. 2015. 20 pages.
      Introductory lesson on key people and events in the long history of the Selma freedom movement.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974, 20th Century | Themes: African American, Civil Rights Movements, Democracy & Citizenship, Organizing, Social Class | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • Union Maids (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Union Maids

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 3 pages.
      Activity for students to write from the point of view of one of the women featured in the film Union Maids.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Themes: Art & Music, Labor, Organizing, Social Class, Women's History | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • Unsung Heroes: Encouraging Students to Appreciate Those Who Fought for Social Justice (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • Unsung Heroes: Encouraging Students to Appreciate Those Who Fought for Social Justice

    • Teaching Activity. Essay by Howard Zinn and lesson by Bill Bigelow. 17 pages.
      Students research and share stories about unsung heroes in U.S. history.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: All US History | Themes: Civil Rights Movements, Organizing, Wars & Related Anti-War Movements, Women's History | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • We Had Set Ourselves Free’: Lessons on the Civil Rights Movement (Teaching Activity) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • 'We Had Set Ourselves Free': Lessons on the Civil Rights Movement

    • Teaching Activity. By Doug Sherman. 4 pages.
      The author describes how he uses biographies and film to introduce students to the role of people involved in the Civil Rights Movement beyond the familiar heroes. He emphasizes the role and experiences of young people in the Movement.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: Cold War: 1945 - 1960, People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974, 20th Century | Themes: African American, Civil Rights Movements, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: High School
    • What Rights Do We Have?

    • Teaching Activity. By Bill Bigelow and Norm Diamond. 7 pages.
      This lesson teaches some of the nuts and bolts of labor unions and then moves beyond to ask students to consider what rights they have at work, and to recognize that “rights” depend in large part on what people have fought for and won.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Themes: Democracy & Citizenship, Labor, Laws & Citizen Rights, Organizing | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
    • ‘What We Want, What We Believe’: Teaching with the Black Panthers’ Ten Point Program | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History
    • ‘What We Want, What We Believe’: Teaching with the Black Panthers’ Ten Point Program

    • Teaching Activity. By Wayne Au. 7 pages.
      The author describes how he used a study of the Black Panther’s Ten Point Program to help students assess issues in their own communities and to develop Ten Point Programs of their own. Available in Spanish.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Activities (Free) | Time Periods: People’s Movement: 1961 - 1974, 20th Century | Themes: African American, Civil Rights Movements, Organizing, Racism & Racial Identity | Reading Levels: High School
    • Labor Matters

    • Teaching Activity. By Teaching Tolerance.
      Introduces students to the role of the labor movement in securing contemporary benefits such as the 40-hour work week, the minimum wage, and workplace safety regulations.

    • Resource Types: Teaching Guides | Time Periods: Turn of the Century: 1900 - 1909, World War I: 1910 - 1919, Prosperity, Depression, & World War II: 1920 - 1944, 20th Century | Themes: Labor, Laws & Citizen Rights, Organizing | Reading Levels: Grades 6-8, High School
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