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Rationale: Simulations provide an excellent way to engage students while teaching valuable lessons. 


The goal of this simulation is to highlight the tensions that came about due to the shift from artisanal cottage industries to factory assembly lines.


This shift created specialized roles that required less training and skill and in turn, lowered prices for products while simultaneously lowering the value of individual labor (lowering pay). It created more jobs than before but at an average lower pay. People could afford more products than ever before yet there was a great downward pressure on pay.


Ultimately, this simulation should lead students to begin to see these tensions and lead to a more nuanced understanding of the benefits and struggles derived from industrialization.


Simulation Overview: Most of the class will be assigned to assembly lines made up of 5-6 workers. Each worker has clearly defined roles and a guided activity that will walk them through completing their part of the line. Their goal will be to complete as many cars (by dragging and dropping pieces from a parts bay) as possible in the time allotted.


The remaining students (usually 2 or 3) will be assigned to work individually as Artisans. They will have their own guided activity with different rules from the rest of the class. Unlike the Assembly Line workers, Artisans will be judged on their creativity, originality and quality of work.


Winning: There will be two winners at the end of the simulation–The Assembly Line Team that produced the most cars (after subtracting faulty construction) and the Artisan whose design is voted to be the best.


What’s Included:


1) A complete 32 Page Teacher’s Guide (in both google slide and pdf format).

2) A complete 21 Slide Assembly Line Production Kit (each team will get one copy)

3) A complete 17 Slide Artisan Production Kit (each artisan will get one copy)

4) An Employee Exit Interview sheet (each student completes a copy at the end to review what they’ve learned)

5) A Google Forms Voting Sheet (so students can vote for their favorite Artisan Design)