The American Journey Modern Times © 2009

Chapter 5: The Industrial Age

Web Activity Lesson Plans

"Industrial Workers"

In this chapter students learned about the Industrial Revolution. They also learned about the workers and their struggles for fair pay and better working conditions. This Web activity reinforces the importance of unions to the worker.

Lesson Description
Students will learn about the AFL and the importance it had for workers. After reading the articles and answering questions associated with the articles, they will use the knowledge they gained to explain the importance of labor unions to workers and politics.

Instructional Objectives

  1. The student will be able to identify key information about the AFL.
  2. The student will be able to explain the support the AFL gave to workers.
  3. The student will be able to use the information they learn to understand the importance of the AFL in the lives of the workers who are members.

Student Web Activity Answers

  1. Unskilled laborers, women, African Americans, and other minorities could not join the AFL.
  2. 1.7 million
  3. Members of the AFL wanted to start admitting unskilled workers. People objected, so they broke off to create the Committee for Industrial Organization. This later became the Congress of Industrial Organizations. They reformed later to create the AFL-CIO.
  4. He joined a cigar makers union.
  5. Gompers worked with President Wilson during WWI to prevent strikes during wartime. Later, he represented international laborers during the Versailles peace treaty and served on the National Defense Council.
  6. Answers may vary but could state that unions speak on behalf of the workers and it is important that they play and active role in politics to give workers better access to politicians.
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