At the beginning of each September, students get a day off school -- and most never ask why. This lesson explores the origins and true meaning of the Labor Day holiday, then encourages students to look toward an even brighter future for the American workforce.
In this lesson, students will learn about working conditions in the late 1800s in America; create a graphic organizer illustrating the events leading to the creation of Labor Day as a national holiday; make historical arguments using biographical research and expert opinion; reflect on the progress made by American labor; research a contemporary problem facing American labor, develop a plan to address the issue, then participate in a service learning opportunity by sharing this research and plan with authentic audiences; and collaborate to develop plans to raise awareness about the origins and real meaning of Labor Day in their school, family, or community.
This lesson is aligned with the Common Core (CCSS) and National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) Standards. It also includes accommodations for English Language Learners (ESOL, EFL, ESL), exceptional education (ESE), and gifted students.