Assembly Line

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The lesson introduces students to the history of the assembly line and its use by Henry Ford in the manufacturing of the automobile.  Many students are accustomed to using products and taking for granted the manufacturing of those products, but do not understand the assembly process.The students will be able to define assembly line, discuss its history, and explain the use of it and the influence it had on the manufacturing of products in America.

Assembly Line Lesson Plan Includes:

  • Full Teacher Guidelines with Creative Teaching Ideas
  • Instructional Content Pages about Assembly Lines
  • Hands-on homework activities
  • Answer Keys
  • Common Core State Standards
  • Many Additional Links and Resources
  • Built for Grades 3-4 but can be adapted for other grade levels.

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Description

This interesting lesson introduces students to the history of the assembly line and its use by Henry Ford in the manufacturing of the automobile.  Many students are accustomed to using products and taking for granted the manufacturing of those products, but do not understand the assembly process.  The lesson looks at the impact on jobs and how it influenced other aspects of American society.  The lesson may be used in conjunction with lessons related to the Industrial Revolution and may be adapted for older students.

Sample Classroom Procedure / Teacher Instruction

  1. Ask students to describe a time when they built something that seemed to take a long time to complete. What difficulties did you have?  What would have made it easier for you to build it?
  2. Allow for responses and discussion. Imagine you had to build cars.  What would help you put the pieces together?  How do you think the first car was built?
  3. Allow for responses and discussion. Introduce the Assembly Line.
  4. Distribute The Assembly Line content pages. Read and review the information with the students.  Save the final question for the lesson closing.  Use the additional resources to enhance understanding.
  5. Distribute Activity pages. Read and review the instructions.  Place students in groups of four or more.  Each student will need two pages of the “doll” pieces.  Distribute the supplies.  Encourage students to work quickly, but the dolls must match the color and design of the original.  Quality and quantity are important.
  6. Following the activity, students discuss and respond to the questions. Hold a class discussion allowing students to share the team’s responses. (Assembly line totals should be higher than working alone.)
  7. Distribute Practice page. Check and review the students’ responses.
  8. Distribute the Homework page. The next day, check and review the students’ responses.
  9. In closing, ask students: Would you rather be a person who builds a product from beginning to end or just one of the people who adds a part to a product on an assembly line?  Why?  Tell students they must choose one or the other.
  10. Allow for responses and discussion. Ask students what other jobs are available for a person who does not have the technology skills to work on computers.  (Responses may include repairing products, trades, and many others.)

Common Core State Standards:

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.3.3
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.3.4
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.4.3
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.4.4

Class Sessions (45 minutes): At least 2 class sessions.

Additional Resources:

Want more social studies resources? Check out our other Social Studies Lesson Plans!

Additional information

Grade Level

3rd Grade, 4th Grade

Subject

Social Studies