Lesson One: The Gilded Age and the Self-Made Man
Preview: Students will write down who they think today or in the past are "self-made man." Students will then list the qualities those people have that make them self-made.
Direct Instruction: Ms. Mac will lecture on Horatio Alger books promoted the ideal of the self-made man.
Individual Assignment: Students will read a biography of two of the Gilded Age's biggest titans creating a t-chart of the ideals of industry, honesty, thrift, ambition, risk-taking, and "pluck."
John D. Rockefeller
Lesson Two: The Gospel of Wealth and Social Darwinism
Preview: The class will discuss three questions: What are the major factors determining why some people are successful and others are not? What barriers prevent some people from achieving success? Should the government try to make society more equal through high taxes on the wealthy and social welfare programs for the poor?
Small Group Shared Reading: In groups of four, student will read the two excerpts from Carnegie and Twain, complete questions, and "text debate" using textual evidence.
Individual Assignment: Students should complete one of the lesson’s essential questions: Can Social Darwinism and the Gospel of Wealth justify the inequalities in society? To what extent does government have a responsibility to address the inequalities in society?
Lesson Three: The Homestead Strike
Preview: Students will read, "The Homestead Strike." While reading, Ms. Mac will assign each student as a Skilled or Unskilled worker at Homestead and hand out the role's worksheet.
Group Activity: The class will be divided into two groups at Homestead: 20% skilled and 80% unskilled. There will also be an inconspicuous person assigned as the Company Spy. Each group will meet together answer their questions. They may reach out to the other group, but do not have to.
"Mass Meeting": Ms. Mac, a retired worked, will chair the meeting to foster understanding of each of the group's needs and position. Then the workers will vote on whether or not to support strike.
Debrief: Ms. Mac will pose questions to the group ending with "thinking about the role play as a whole, what would you say made it hard to get together? What made it easy?
Individual Assignment: The will read The Homestead Strike: The Outcome and answer the three questions posed.