Women Wanting to Work
by Heather Auletta
GRADE LEVEL: 9-10
TIME ALLOTMENT: Two hours including web-based part of Culminating Activity
Worldwide, women are influencing businesses and economies on an unprecedented scale. WIDE ANGLE's "1-800-INDIA" (2005) and "Pickles, Inc." (2005) give us insight into two instances of economic and social shifts being wrought by the entry of women into local and international economies. In this lesson, students will begin by examining historic photographs to determine how economic roles for women have changed in the United States. They will then look at contemporary examples of women entering the workforce for the first time: in India's outsourcing sector; and in small business in Israel. They will explore how these women's entry into the economic sphere often involves negotiation and the overcoming of obstacles, but can bring about larger social and behavioral changes as well. As a Culminating Activity, students will apply the knowledge gained in this lesson toward a response to a Document-Based Question.
SUBJECT MATTER: Global History and Geography/World History
Students will be able to:
- Compare and contrast past- and present-day female economic roles in United States history;
- Compare and contrast economic and social roles of women in contemporary India and Israel;
- Analyze documents offering different historical accounts of women in history;
- Evaluate the changing economic and social roles of women in India and Israel today.
New York State Learning Standards for Social Studies
Standards available online at http://www.emsc.nysed.gov/ciai/socst/pub/sslearn.pdf.
Standard 2. World History (commencement)
New York State Regents Global History and Geography Curriculum Tie-Ins
Standard 2. Geography (commencement)
- Define culture and civilization, explaining how they developed and changed over time. Investigate the various components of cultures and civilizations including social customs, norms, values, and traditions; political systems; economic systems; religions and spiritual beliefs; and socialization or educational practices.
- Understand the development and connectedness of Western civilization and other civilizations and cultures in many areas of the world and over time.
- Analyze historic events from around the world by examining accounts written from different perspectives.
- Understand the broad patterns, relationships, and interactions of cultures and civilizations during particular eras and across eras.
- Analyze changing and competing interpretations of issues, events, and developments throughout world history.
- Analyze evidence critically and demonstrate an understanding of how circumstances of time and place influence perspective.
- Analyze the roles and contributions of individuals and groups to social, political, economic, cultural, and religious practices and activities.
- Explain the dynamics of cultural change and how interactions between and among cultures has affected various cultural groups throughout the world.
- Examine the social/cultural, political, economic, and religious norms and values of Western and other world cultures.
- Identify historical problems, pose analytical questions or hypotheses, research analytical questions or test hypotheses, formulate conclusions or generalizations, raise new questions or issues for further investigation.
- Interpret and analyze documents and artifacts related to significant developments and events in world history.
- Analyze different interpretations of important events, issues, or developments in world history by studying the social, political, and economic context in which they were developed; by testing the data source for reliability and validity, credibility, authority, authenticity, and completeness; and by detecting bias, distortion of the facts, and propaganda by omission, suppression, or invention of facts. (Taken from National Standards for World History).
- Understand the development and interactions of social/cultural, political, economic, and religious systems in different regions of the world.
Curriculum available online at http://www.emsc.nysed.gov/ciai/socst/pub/sscore2.pdf
Unit Eight: Global Connections and Interactions
Advanced Placement World History Curriculum Tie-Ins
A. Social and Political Patterns and Change
7. Status of women and children
B. Economic Issues
a. Economic issues
b. Social issues
1. North/South dichotomy; issues of development
Course Description available online at:
(Requires the Adobe Acrobat Reader)
4. Impact of major global economic developments (the Great Depression; technology; Pacific Rim; multinational corporations)
Major Comparisons and Snapshots
6. Social reform and social revolution (changing gender roles; family structures; rise of feminism; peasant protest; international Marxism; religious fundamentalism)
7. Globalization of science, technology, and culture
- Developments in global cultures and regional reactions, including science and consumer culture
- Interactions between elite and popular culture and art
- Patterns of resistance including religious responses
- Assess different proposals (or models) for economic growth in the developing world and the social and political consequences.
WIDE ANGLE, "1-800-INDIA" (2005) and "Pickles, Inc." (2005) (selected clips)
Introductory Activity Web sites: For the Introductory Activity, students will view pictures of women from throughout the history of the United States. The following sites are some suggestions for pictures, but other images may be used as well.
Culminating Activity Web sites: For the Culminating Activity, students will view documents from the following Web sites to complete the short answer section of the DBQ.
For the class:
For each student:
PREP FOR TEACHERS
Prior to teaching this lesson, you will need to:
Bookmark the Web sites used in the lesson on each computer in your classroom, or upload all links to an online bookmarking utility such as www.portaportal.com.
Preview all of the video clips and Web sites used in the lesson to make certain that they are appropriate for your students, currently available, and accessible from your classroom.
Download the video clips used in this lesson onto your hard drive, or prepare to stream the clips from your classroom. RealPlayer is needed to view the video clips. If your classroom computer does not have it, download RealPlayer for free at www.real.com.
Print and make copies of the three student organizers for each student.
When using media, provide students with a FOCUS FOR MEDIA INTERACTION, a specific task to complete and/or information to identify during or after viewing of video segments, Web sites, or other multimedia elements.
Procedures for Teachers
- Explain to your students that they will be examining pictures of women in different periods of United States history. Distribute the "Document Analysis Student Organizer" to each student. Provide your students with a FOCUS FOR MEDIA INTERACTION, asking them to fill in the first column of the handout called "What do I see?" while viewing the pictures at the following Web sites:
- Have students share their observations about each picture aloud. Then, have them brainstorm information for the second column, called "Reflects Change." Ask your students to consider the time period, historical events that may have led to change, etc. Have the students share their ideas aloud. (Students may indicate that at the turn of the century, women did work associated with handicrafts, teaching nursing, etc., industrialization brought more employment opportunities, war leads to a decrease in available male labor, etc.)
LEARNING ACTIVITY #1
- Explain to your students that they will be examining case studies of women in two different countries: India and Israel. Distribute the "World of Women Student Organizer" to each student. Tell the students they will be completing the chart while watching several video clips.
- Provide your students with a bit of background on the first two clips they are about to see. Explain that Santosh Kohli is an Indian woman working for an outsourcing company in India. She is being interviewed about the role she plays in her family.
- Provide your students with a FOCUS FOR MEDIA INTERACTION, asking them to fill in the first column of the "World of Women Student Organizer" on India. PLAY Clip 1, "The Value of a Girl," for the class. Check for comprehension (Santosh did not receive the same educational opportunities as her brothers did, and had to struggle against her parents' wishes to educate herself and join the workforce).
- Provide your students with a FOCUS FOR MEDIA INTERACTION, asking them to fill in the second column of the "World of Women Student Organizer" on India. PLAY Clip 2, "New Confidence," for the class. Ask your students to share how traditional roles for women in Indian society are changing according to Santosh Kohli's story (Her new jobs allows Santosh to support her family economically and has given her new confidence in herself).
LEARNING ACTIVITY #2
- Provide your students with some background on the next clips they are about to see: the women in the video are Palestinian women living in Northern Israel. They are all widows. They have started a small business together.
- Provide your students with a FOCUS FOR MEDIA INTERACTION by asking them to fill in the first column on the "World of Women Student Organizer for Israel while watching the clip. PLAY Clip 3, "Widows in Israel," for the class. Check for comprehension. (These women, all widows, would traditionally be expected to stay at home.)
- Provide your students with a FOCUS FOR MEDIA INTERACTION by asking them to fill in the second column on the"World of Women Student Organizer for Israel while watching the following two clips. PLAY Clip 4, "Pickle Business," for the class. Check for comprehension after this clip (the widows have started a pickling business together. Fatima Nator is explaining why it is important that she is making money and working in this company.)
LEARNING ACTIVITY #3
- Provide your students with a bit of background on the clip they are about to see: Explain that in this clip the students will see some of the problems the pickling women have to overcome to continue in the business. Provide your students with a FOCUS FOR MEDIA INTERACTION by asking them to continue filling in the second column on the "World of Women Student Organizer" for Israel. PLAY Clip 5, "All-Female Enterprise," for the class. Ask your students to share how traditional roles of Palestinian women are changing. (For instance, students may answer that traditionally women may not have had jobs outside the home and now these women are running their own business. Because they are running a small business, they take care of all aspects of the enterprise themselves. They have to arrange their work schedules around their obligations at home, including taking care of their children).
Students will complete a Document-Based Question using online articles and the film clips they have just seen. Distribute the "Document-Based Question Student Organizer" to each student, and go over the directions for Part A (short answers) as a class. Also go over the directions for Part B, where students will use the documents and their knowledge of Global History to write an essay. Provide the students with a FOCUS FOR MEDIA INTERACTION, directing them to visit the Web sites to fill out Part A, taking detailed notes that will help them write the DBQ essay in Part B.
- Part B, "Essay," may be completed in class or for homework.
- Students can research economic status of women in other parts of the world.
- Students may compile portfolios of posters of women in the workforce.
Students may interview local small business owners in the community (started by men or women). Have the students ask the business owners to describe any obstacles they have had to overcome in starting and maintaining their businesses, as well as to speak about any positive impacts their businesses have had.
Contact local social service organizations that provide employment counseling for women and invite a representative to speak to your class.