Teaching the Industrial Revolution with Primary and Secondary Sources

We spent a few days recently learning about the Industrial Revolution.  My Smarties are going to be taking a final exam in social studies, which is based on a DBQ, so I wanted them to have a little practice with primary and secondary documents.
Have you seen this picture of Addie?
This famous photograph is by Lewis Hine.
I started by putting Addie's picture up on an anchor chart, and giving my students a similar copy for their interactive notebooks.  For homework, I asked them to make observations about the picture, and write them down in the notebook.

The next day, we discussed what we observed, and I wrote their observations in BLUE marker on the anchor chart.  Any observations that they didn't have were added to the notebook.  There was a great discussion about the inferences they could make about young Addie, and of course I made them back it up with at least two pieces of text evidence, either from the actual photograph or from what we had read in our text book.  

Then, we read an article:  Searching for Addie The Story behind a Famous Photograph by Elizabeth Winthrop.  After reading and discussing the article, we added information from this secondary source in GREEN on the anchor chart.  We had a great discussion about the information you can gather and how it is different based on whether it is a document, photograph, primary or secondary source.

Finally, we started our DBQ on the positive and negative effects of the Industrial Revolution.  I went over each document and question with my students before providing them the TDEC organizer for writing.  I love the insightful comments they were making when they had to look closely at a second photograph from Lewis Hine.  Kudos to my Smarties!
Hang in there, we can almost see Friday!


  1. This is a great lesson idea! Thank you for sharing.

  2. Thanks for sharing this lesson. Love your ideas.

  3. Great idea! I have gathered free industrial revolution images for teachers on my TpT store: https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Free-Industrial-Revolution-Images-1168900 which would be helpful for you if you wanted to take this concept and use different images.

  4. TDEC?????
    I stumbled upon this one particular blog post of yours; I am not a regular follower. It would be helpful to elaborate on what you are speaking of when you are referring to this organizer. I love your lesson idea. TDEC isn't something I am familiar with and I couldn't find anything much more than Technology Distance Education Center and the like by web search...


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