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A Day in the Life of the Working Poor
Transcript of A Day in the Life of the Working Poor
You will work with a partner for part of the class period
to develop a plan for dealing with this average day in the life of someone living on the edge of poverty. Together, you and your partner will write a detailed plan for how your family will solve the problem it is presented.
You are married with two children, a 4-year-old daughter
and an 8-year-old son. You work as a laborer in the Salinas Valley of California, where you pick seasonal fruits and vegetables for $9 an hour. You have an after-tax income of $14,000 a year. After paying rent and utilities on the modest apartment that you live in, you have just $20 a day to take care of your family’s needs. You and your spouse try to save a little money, but something always comes up and drains the piggy bank. You have no savings and live paycheck-to-paycheck, just like everyone you know. Your husband/wife cannot work because of a back injury, but at least you don’t have to pay for childcare for your daughter.
Problem to Solve...
Article Discussion Questions
To Kill a Mockingbird is a novel which focuses on characters who, for the most part, live at the poverty level. In order to gain a deeper understanding of themes embedded within the novel it is necessary to gain some understanding of the challenges and frustrations presented by poverty. Today you will have the opportunity to take a deep look into an actual 21st Century working-poor Americans life as well as work on on assignment that forces you to deal with the same issues a family living at the poverty level faces in our contemporary society.
You arrive home from work and begin to make plans for the following day. You need to
buy food for all three meals for the entire family tomorrow. Your 4-year-old daughter has a fever and needs medicine. You need to have money for the bus fare to and from work tomorrow. (Your job is six miles away from your home.) In addition, your 8-year-old on accidentally tore the side out of his tennis shoe on the way home from school. Both children have only one pair of shoes and the
weather is turning cold. What will you spend your money on? You have $20.50 in your wallet and nothing in the bank. Together, you and your partner need to make a list of how you will spend
your money and meet the needs of your family. Don’t just create a shopping list. Instead, explain the menu for each meal (with a price for each item) and record other expenses. Write the grand
total clearly at the top of the page.
Mark the text for connection to the novel and note any character similarities.
As you develop a deeper understanding of the working-poor, how does this article connect to what you know about the people of Maycomb and their survival during the Great Depression?
Connect the article to this statement from Atticus, "You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view...until you climb into his skin and walk around in it."
Did the article help explain Atticus' compassionate view point?
Does this quote have any real-world implication for you?
Really put yourself in someone else's shoes...
1. Serve your kids healthy food. You must have a fruit or vegetable at EVERY meal.
2. explain what you will make with each food item...clearly!
make sure you would want to eat your meals! You want to make your family happy!!
When you and your partner have finalized your menu and expenditures work independently on the Quickwrite.
Please pay close attention to the writing requirements.
In the event that you whiz through everything...start reading chapter 12.