| "The Big Bridge Scheme": The Building and Impact of the Brooklyn Bridge
Five 45-minute classes
The Brooklyn Bridge, which is an important part of the transportation infrastructure of the New York City, has come to symbolize the prosperity and ingenuity of America, but it was not always a project that was supported by all people of Brooklyn and New York. Through the course of this lesson, students will use archival newspaper articles to learn about different points of view about building the Brooklyn Bridge. They will also use Web site and video excerpts to learn about the impact that the bridge had on the lives of the people living in Brooklyn and Manhattan.
American/New York History, Language Arts
Students will be able to:
- Demonstrate an understanding of the history of the Brooklyn Bridge and its impact on society.
- Understand conflicting points of view about the building of the Brooklyn Bridge.
- Use primary sources, such as newspaper articles and archival photos, to gather information about the Brooklyn Bridge.
- Respond to a poem about the Brooklyn Bridge
From the New York State Learning Standards for Social Studies, available online at
Standard 1: Students will use a variety of intellectual skills to demonstrate their understanding of major ideas, eras, themes, developments, and turning points in the history of the United States and New York.
Standard 5: Civics, Citizenship, and Government: Students will use a variety of intellectual skills to demonstrate their understanding of the necessity for establishing governments; the governmental system of the United States and other nations; the United States Constitution; the basic civic values of American constitutional democracy; and the roles, rights, and responsibilities of citizenship, including avenues of participation.
From the New York State Learning Standards for English Language Arts, available online at http://www.nysatl.nysed.gov/ssstand.html:
Standard 1: Language for Information and Understanding: Students will listen, speak, read, and write for information and understanding. As listeners and readers, students will collect data, facts, and ideas; discover relationships, concepts, and generalizations; and use knowledge generated from oral, written, and electronically produced texts. As speakers and writers, they will use oral and written language that follows the accepted conventions of the English language to acquire, interpret, apply, and transmit information.
Standard 2: Language for Literary Response and Expression: Students will read and listen to oral, written, and electronically produced texts and performances from American and world literature; relate texts and performances to their own lives; and develop an understanding of the diverse social, historical, and cultural dimensions the texts and performances represent. As speakers and writers, students will use oral and written language that follows the accepted conventions of the English language for self-expression and artistic creation.
The Brooklyn Bridge
This video examines the history of the Brooklyn Bridge and the people who built it.
VR Tour: Brooklyn Bridge
This page includes 3 different 360-degree views of the Brooklyn Bridge. This website requires Quicktime VR, available online at www.quicktime.com.
Brooklyn Bridge Gallery
This page contains a number of thumbnail images of photos taken by Denton Taylor. To see the larger version or each image, click on the thumbnail image.
The Brooklyn Daily Eagle
This page, which is part of the Brooklyn Public Library, contains scanned images of The Brooklyn Daily Eagle. It can be searched by date and by keyword.
Brooklyn Bridge - Construction Countdown!
This page includes an interactive component that gives students an overview of the building of the Brooklyn Bridge, and takes students through important milestones in the building of the bridge. It also includes a listing of important bridge terminology.
For the class:
For each student: