I can describe the history and meaning of Labor Day.
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Use this presentation to help students understand the Labor Day holiday and its history. In this lesson, students are introduced to early labor movements and terms like “unions” and “strikes.” They also reflect on the roles of community helpers in society. The lesson includes a video, a crossword puzzle, a matching activity, and a writing assignment in which students explain what they want to be when they grow up and why.
Students will be able to explain the history of labor movements and the Labor Day holiday. They will be able to identify and reflect on community workers and their roles.
First, explain what Labor Day is and have students fill in the blank calendar to determine where Labor Day falls. Next, students drag the faces to the boxes beside each statement to demonstrate how they would feel in that scenario. Engage in a discussion about work/play balance and have students share what they do on Labor Day with their friends or families.
Then go into the history of the holiday by describing the poor working conditions of the past and the formation of labor unions. Explain what strikes are and discuss the first Labor Day parade in Union Square. Introduce President Grover Cleveland and how Labor Day became a national holiday. After this, students can drag the letters in the chart to complete the Labor Day crossword puzzle.
Next, discuss community helpers. Have students identify the community helpers presented on the board. Watch the video and see if students can think of any other jobs. Students then draw a line to match the profession to the tools needed for that job. Finally, students will think about what they want to be when they grow up. There is a printable worksheet included for this activity.
The lesson includes material appropriate for grades K-4. Feel free to save this lesson and customize it to fit the needs of your classroom.
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