Ten Ways to Use Annie’s Stories to Teach History

1. Study literature of the early twentieth century.
a. Categorize popular fiction by genre.
b. Discuss why L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz was so
popular and contrast it with other children’s literature of the times.
c. Talk about what the differences in what woman preferred to read and what
men chose.
2. Study the beginnings of Wall Street and what the economy was like in that era.
a. Talk about the financial schemes of the era and how the ponzi scheme
existed earlier than when Charles Ponzi made the technique known in
1920.
b. Talk about the options people of this era had for investing money.
c. Discuss the abyss between the rich and the poor at the turn of the twentieth
century.
d. Read books and/or novels that illustrate the challenges people were facing,
such as The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton.
e. Study the role of bankers like J. Pierpont Morgan in the expansion of
business trusts run by Andrew Carnegie and John D. Rockefeller.
3. Learn about housekeeping at the turn of the twentieth century.
a. Try some recipes mentioned in Annie’s Stories:
http://cindythomson.blogspot.com/2014/07/early-20th-century-recipesfrom-annies.html#.U9fVQ41dWmc
b. Explore the ways people of this era shopped such as street venders, trade
shops, department stores.
c. Learn about everyday chores:
http://www.tenement.org/encyclopedia/housing_keeping.htm
4. Learn about Irish storytellers.
a. Read books such as The Last Storyteller by Frank Delaney.
b. Study the art of Irish storytelling. http://youtu.be/BzP4FM3WqwY
c. Put on a performance.
d. Learn about some famous Irish authors like W. B. Yeats, Lady Gregory,
and others.
5. Learn about immigrant aid societies, children aid societies, and other charities of
the era.
6. Explore genealogy through Ellis Island.
a. http://www.ellisisland.org/genealogy/index.asp
b. http://genealogy.about.com/od/ellis_island/tp/search_tips.htm
7. Find out about the history behind the fictional author’s mark in Annie’s Stories.
a. http://cindythomson.blogspot.com/2014/07/the-history-behind-fictionalauthors.html#.U9fYbo1dWmc
8. Learn about the Magdalene Laundries and other institutions.
9. Learn about memorial libraries like the one Annie Gallagher hoped to build. Find
one in your area to research and find out why someone decided to build it.
10. Study immigration of the era and list which countries were represented. Choose a
country to learn more about it and why people were fleeing at that time.

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