What changes occurred in the garment industry during this period?
Students will study the growing garment industry during this
period, with particular attention to the industrialization and
move toward large sweatshops. Students may also elect
to study how industrial processes allowed for the creation of
new fabrics. An interesting corollary is the growth of labor unions
within the industry.
A portfolio will be created by each student, containing the following:
Research materials reflecting major developments in the United
States and the world. Possible sources for research include:
Public library and local resources
Labor organizations, such as the ILGWU
Personal stories. At least one oral history/interview should
be required. These stories could take the form of someone who worked
in the industry, or deal with how clothing buying and wearing patterns
have changed over time.
Literacy. Students should select an appropriate, related
novel or short story dealing with industrialization (see resources
section for suggestions).
Timeline. This should reflect the time from 1870 to the
present, and include major events that influenced the industry.
An artistic or scientific creation reflecting the differences
in available fabrics. This project should allow the student
a wide range of choices as far as materials. Students may elect
to create a collage of fabrics, or demonstrate differences in strength
Work Plan. Students should create a physical work space
for a small organization, like the Tirocchis, and a large,
At several checkpoints during this project, the teacher and group
should gather to compare and share progress and discoveries. As
the research and activities progress, a whole-group project should
be chosen and the students begin working towards its completion.
Examples might include:
Create a quilt of fabrics, indicating the country of origin
and the types of garments it was used for.
Create a business plan for the Tirocchis. Which innovations
did they adopt, and which did they not? Why did they remain
a small operation?
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