Elementary & Up Curricula

Overview

Elementary & Middle School Curricula

Find topnotch curricula for elementary and middle school students, from role plays to a puppet show and comic book histories. The curricula is presented in grade order, from kindergarten to middle school, with the exception that our two newest items are listed first. Click on the individual images below to download the curriculum for free. 

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Labor Cards
Curriculum Flash Cards

NEW! The Labor Cards deck puts labor history into your students’ hands! The cards boast 30 drawings by artist Jos Sances and short bios of famous labor figures all in a friendly trading card format. From Lucy Parsons to Dolores Huerta, from Haywood to King and Bridges and everyone in between. A great way to introduce the labor movement and teach kids about labor’s campaigns for workplace rights and social justice for all.

Grades: Sixth though 12th
Language: English
Format: 30 cards, 2.5 in x 3.5 in
Cost: Free download, $5 in print

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Farmworker Comix
Comic Book History

NEW! To honor the 50th anniversary of the Delano Grape Strike, which resulted in the founding of the United Farm Workers, the committee produced this comic book history. Written by elementary teacher Bill Morgan, and beautifully illustrated by Zap Comix artist Spain Rodriguez and Jos Sances, the bilingual booklet traces workers’ struggle for dignity in California’s fields from the 19th century through the UFW.

Grades: Fourth grade and up
Languages: English, Spanish
Pages: 28
Cost: Free download, $3 print
Common core standards correlations

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Trouble in the Hen House
Reader and Puppet Show

Flexible elementary curriculum based on a play and puppet show about hens organizing against a mean farmer. Read as a story to kindergarten and first grade students. Grades 2-3 children can stage the puppet show. Grades 4-5 can use in a “readers theater” format or students can stage play for a younger group. Students can make puppets and learn about the potential for power in collective action.

Grades: Kindergarten through fifth
Languages: English
Pages: 20
Cost: Free download, $3 print
Common Core Standards correlation

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Along the Shore
Coloring Book

A coloring book for grades K-3 presents scenes from the lives of working people, focusing especially on longshore workers (in the International Longshore and Warehouse Union), but including many others. Simply but effectively shows the importance of unions in workers’ lives. Excellent for geography lessons as well. 

Grades: Kindergarten through third
Languages: English, Spanish
Pages: 24
Cost: Free download, $3 print
Common Core Standards correlation

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The Yummy Pizza Company
Role Play

Ten lesson plans for elementary students, introducing them to the world of work in a pizza factory simulation. Students learn how to apply for jobs, to work cooperatively on an assembly line, to retail their wares, to bank their earnings and—most importantly—to resolve conflicts through organization and negotiation.

Grades: First through fifth
Languages: English, Spanish
Spanish version
Pages: 30
Cost: Free download, $3 print
Common Core Standards correlation

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The Yummy Strawberry Company
Role Play

Substitute for The Yummy Pizza Company if you don’t have access to cooking facilities. Same basic idea, but rearranged for simpler cooking. For elementary students, introducing them to the world of work in a chocolate dipped strawberry company simulation. Students apply for jobs, work cooperatively on an assembly line, retail their wares, bank their earnings and participate in collective bargaining. 

Grades: First through fifth
Languages: English
Pages: 30
Cost: Free download, $3 print
Common Core Standards correlation

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I, Tomato
Reader with Study Questions

A booklet for fourth graders, chronicling the life of a tomato—from the point of view of the tomato, with an emphasis on its interactions with workers who nurture it from seed to your table. Gives children a sense of the work that goes into food production and distribution. Includes study questions.

Grades: Fourth
Languages: English, Spanish
Pages: 24
Cost: Free download, $3 print
Common Core Standards correlation

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Mission Labor
Reader with Study Questions

Learn the real story about what happened in the California missions under Spanish and Mexican rule. Who built the missions? How were the workers treated? What was the impact of this type of work on the California Indian population?  Written by veteran elementary teacher Bill Morgan, with beautiful illustrations by award-winning artist Jos Sances.

Grades: Fourth and fifth
Languages: English, Spanish
Pages: 24 
Cost: Free download, $3 print
Common Core Standards correlations

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Let Me Tell You About This Man: Cesar Chavez, Union Organizer
Reader with Study Questions

A biography of the most successful farm labor organizer in American history, the man who built the first farm workers union that lasted. An icon for Latinos and unionists alike, Cesar Chavez created a movement based in the principles of union organizing and non-violent civil disobedience.

Grades: Fourth and fifth
Languages: English, Spanish
Pages: 24
Cost: Free download, $3 in print
Common Core Standards correlation

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Autoworks
Comic Book History

A full-color comic book history of the United Automobile Workers, one of the most important industrial unions of the mid-20th century, and central to the creation of the American Dream for millions of workers over several generations. Written by Bill Morgan and illustrated by Bill Yund.

Grades: Middle school and up
Languages: English
Pages: 28
Cost: Free download, $3 print
Common Core Standards correlation