Synopsis

Lesson Snapshot

1. Engage: Students will respond in writing with their opinion on the Bill Gates quote “With great wealth comes great responsibility.” They will begin to connect this quote with the attitudes and behaviors of the massively wealthy industrialists of the late 19th century and develop an understanding of the terms “robber baron” and “captain of industry.”

2. Explore: Working in pairs, students will analyze a set of documents on Andrew Carnegie and John D. Rockefeller. From these documents, students will create charts that outline the “robber baron” and “captain of industry” characteristics of the two men.

3. Explain: Students will display their charts citing evidence for what made Andrew Carnegie and John D. Rockefeller “robber barons” or “captains of industry.” Through a gallery walk, they will examine other students’ information and record it for future use.

4. Extend/Expand: Students will look at examples of wealthy individuals today and determine if they are “robber barons” or “captains of industry.”

5. Evaluate: Students will write anbiographical sketch for Andrew Carnegie or John D. Rockefeller in which they argue whether their chosen subject was a “captain of industry”/“philanthropist” or a “robber baron,” using information from the readings.