"Teaching Thrift: A Curriculum" Unit 2: Anti-Thrift

Bernadette McHenry

Institute for American Values, 2016

The enduring understandings gained in Unit 2: Anti-Thrift, are (1) waste is the opposite of thrift and takes many forms; (2) There are many arguments against the practice of thrift; (3) arguments for and against the practice of thrift have historical roots; (4) women's political enfranchisement coincided with the thrift movement of the early 20th century.

Content comes from: anti-thrift arguments, the "Golden Age" of American immigration; the prohibition movement as a thrift movement; and the rise of American consumer economy.

Essential Questions include: (1) What is the opposite of thrift? (2) What are the arguments against thrift? (3) What role did thrift play in the immigrant experience in the early 20th century? (4) What role did anti-thrift play in the Americanization process at that time? (5) Why did women spearhead the thrift movement? (6) What kinds of relationships can exist between thrift and consumerism?

Students will gain the following skills: (1) make inferences and draw conclusions from a text; (2) compare and contrast multiple historical sources; (3) identify and evaluate contributions of groups and individuals to Pennsylvania and U.S. history; (4) identify and evaluate change and continuity from the early 20th to early 21st century immigrant experiences; (5) use basic mathematical computations to compare prices; and (6) calculate interest and compound interest using online resources.

Subjects: Curricula, Teaching thrift, Thrift Collection

More by: Bernadette McHenry

Contents of Unit 2, Anti-Thrift



Lesson 2.1 Anti-Thrift Defined

Lesson 2.2 Dimensions of Thrift

Lesson 2.3 Gambling as Anti-thrift

Lesson 2.4 Arguments Against Thrift: Consumerism

Lesson 2.5 Arguments Against Thrift: Socialism



Institute for American Values, 420 Lexington Avenue, Room 300, New York, NY 10170-0399