Lessons

Beyond 7 Billion

la-la-fg-bangladesh-garment-worker02-jpg-20140312.png

Mukhta Mollah, 19, is one of the 350 factory workers at Beauty Garments Pvt. Ltd. She earns $20 a week working eight hours or longer a day, six days a week. Although her salary may not amount to a lot, working in the factory has given her a measure of independence. Image by Kenneth R. Weiss. Bangladesh, 2014.

la-la-fg-bangladesh-garment-worker01-jpg-20140312.png

Beauty Garments Pvt. Ltd. in Dhaka is one of Bangladesh's 5,600 garment factories, which employ more than 4 million people. Image by Kenneth R. Weiss. Bangladesh, 2014.

la-la-fg-bangladesh-garment-worker03-jpg-20140312.png

Bangladesh's garment industry has earned a reputation for harsh and sometimes lethal working conditions. But the factory jobs have also enabled young girls to make the transition from childhood to adulthood with some independence. Image by Kenneth R. Weiss. Bangladesh, 2014.

This lesson is written as a series of notes for facilitators.

Educator Notes: 

This lesson is designed for an early high school classroom on a 100 minute block schedule with access to computers. As alternatives teachers may assign the article and questions for homework or provide printed copies of the article for the students to read in class or as homework.

Objective:

Students will analyze the choices for girls in Bangladesh and discuss whether working in the garment industry really does allow women to find more freedom.

Warm-up Activity:

Have students brainstorm future options for girls in America. What can or can’t they do? Discussions may range from limits on combat duty, cases of unequal pay, growing numbers of women in post graduate programs, staying home to raise children, women earning college degrees at a greater rate than men, etc.

Introducing the Lesson:

Students will read the article "Bangladesh Women Find Liberty in Hard Labor" and analyze whether they believe the garment industry is providing more liberty for women in Bangladesh.

Activity:

While reading the article, please answer the attached questions.

Conclusion:

Put students in small groups to discuss the answers to their questions. After circulating to hear if the discussions are coming to an end, the teacher will pose the question: So what could be done in Bangladesh, if anything, to increase women’s options? The teacher can lead a whole-class discussion based on the student responses.

Lesson Builder Survey