NAME: _________________________________ 

CP Humanities

Kathleen Moylan
Worcester Technical HS, MA
Layered Curriculum Unit: The Industrial Revolution

DUE DATE: __________________________

Core Question Discussion Date:_________________

Unit Overview:

This unit will explore the changes that took place in Europe as a result of the Industrial and Agricultural Revolutions in Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries 

After completing this unit, you will be able to:


Core Question: What changes created by the Industrial Revolution still impact our lives today?

“C” Level: maximum 70 points

Please choose from the assignments below for a maximum of 70 points. No more than 2 C level assignments will be evaluated on the unit due date

Listen quietly, and take notes on lectures       10 points each

Which came first? The Agricultural Revolution and the Population Explosion! ________

The jenny, the gin, and the steam engine: the Industrial Revolution begins_________

Participate in the “Where in the world” exercise: where are my clothes made?    5 points

Participate in the in class readings of interviews of industrial workers by reading aloud, or listening to others read aloud          

Create a found poem on the Industrial Revolution interviews; read it to the class   10 points 

Mandatory Assignment:

Read one or more of the historical documents listed below. Complete the historical documents worksheet, and be ready to respond to questions about what you have read     10-15 points for each reading

“Letter from Leeds Cloth Merchants, 1791”  

“Leeds Woollen Workers Petition, 1786” 

“Industrial Manchester,1844” Friedrich Engels

Rules for Factory Workers

others to be named later!

Read the “Tables Illustrating the Spread of Industrialization” charts and write down ten observations or facts that you have learned from the tables and charts.       10 points


Draw one of the following inventions and be ready to explain how it worked, and its impact on the Industrial revolution:

      The cotton gin

      The spinning jenny

      The steam engine

      Arkwright’s water frame 

Read the story of the Blackstone Canal “Full Circle at 175” and be ready to explain what the Canal’s purpose was and why it failed           10 points 

Create a timeline of the Industrial Revolution. Be sure to include major inventions and events that relate to the Industrial Revolution; 10 events must be included and defended    10 points        10 points 

Create a map of Europe that identifies the population density of Europe in 1800s, and the major centers of industrialization  (see History of Western Society text for a good map).     15 points      15 points

Be ready to answer the following questions as they relate to your map.


Complete the thesis statement activity on the documents of the Industrial Revolution and defend your chosen thesis          15 points

Create and color a storyboard that shows a “before and after” change in European society that took place as a result of an invention from the agricultural or industrial revolutions.    10 points 

Write a factual newspaper article of an event covered in this unit. Be sure to present the point of view of the country in which the article is written (5 points extra for writing in a language other than English) 10-15 points


Watch the video on Manville and the Industrial Revolution and complete the study guide  10 points

“B” Level: 15 points

Please choose ONE of the following assignments to complete. You must have 70 points to proceed to the B level. 

Pretend that you are a member of Parliament who has just read the interviews concerning child labor in the textile industry. Write a speech in which you propose a change to the child labor laws, OR you defend the need for child labor. Use evidence from the interviews to justify your request for change, or your support of conditions as they are. Use the persuasive essay rubric as your guide. 

Create a monologue using one of the stories from the Forty Cents an Hour book. Read the story, and create a first person account, using the exact words of the piece, or other words that you think reflect the tone of the piece. Present it to the class. 

Write your own poem or song on the impact or conditions of the Industrial Revolution on people or society as a whole.  Read this poem or sing this song to the class. 

Create a painting that you feel reflects the impact of the Industrial Revolution.  Write a summary of the painting and what it means.  Present it to the class.

“A” Level: 15 points

Please choose ONE of the following assignments or questions to complete. You must achieve one B level assignment before moving to the A level *****Note: A and B level assignments may NOT be turned in on the same day 

Research the rise and fall of a local mill such as the Lonsdale Mills, Albion Mills, or Manville Mills. See me for information and rubrics. If you have a relative who used to work in one of those mills, choose that one!!

PAIR UP, or complete individually: Complete the webquest based on the book Nickel and Dimed, found at the following URL:

1. Read the Introduction and the Resources sections of the website

2. See me for the following:


3. Complete tasks 1 through 5 of the webquest, and be prepared to explain to the class the results of your experiment.  

Are there similarities between the life of today’s American working poor and the workers of the early Industrial Revolution? What are the differences? 

`**either one of these may be done as a team (of no more than 3) per presentation 

Research the sweatshop controversy involving American-owned companies such as Nike, Disney, and Walmart. Choose one of these companies and create a presentation or a written paper in which you explain the issue, and the ways in which the company has attempted to address the sweatshop problem, if it has. What solution do you propose in order to address this issue? 

Research a modern day labor union such as the American Federation of Teachers, the Brotherhood of International Teamsters, the International Ladies Garment Workers Association or the AFL-CIO. What are the major issues for this union and its workers today? How do these issues relate to labor issues from the beginning of the Industrial Revolution? What advances made by labor unions in the past have affected modern day unions? Write a research paper or create a presentation that answers these questions. 

Participate in a Socratic seminar on Bill Gates’ “Speech on American High Schools.” After reading and annotating the speech, be ready to discuss Gates’ vision for a new American high school. What types of programs would he support? How well are we doing at Lincoln High School to achieve Gates’ vision?