# Minimum Wage and the Effects on the Cost of Living

## Lesson Focus and Instructional Purpose

A team of 12th grade Fremont High School teachers developed this integrated unit spanning math, social studies and ELA, which focuses on themes of equity, financial stability and quality of life.

### Unifying Essential Question(s)

• How does the increase in minimum wage affect the cost of living?

• Economics: How much impact does every $1 make to you? • Math: How do I calculate the pre and post cost of a living wage? • ELA: How do I use images to tell a story about the impact of minimum wage? ### Collaborative Learning Objective(s) Students will be able to explain the process by which they have researched, studied, and “measured” the impact of the increase of the minimum wage in California, and how they have solved mathematical problems that have arisen. Students will be able to respond to the unit’s essential question (and potentially supporting questions), using evidence from their research and mathematical study to support conclusions about whether the minimum wage is a living wage in California. ### Subject Area Learning Objectives • Economics: Students will be able to make connections between income equality and minimum wage • Math: Students will be able to quantify the fairness of the current minimum wage and the increase of the minimum wage • ELA: Students will be able to use a three-part-structure and relevant images to create an infographic that conveys their understanding of the impact of the minimum wage. ### Standards Addressed ## Close Reading Text Set ### Anchor Text Minimum Wage ### Supporting Texts ### Organized Text Set ## Student Activities and Tasks ### Text-Dependent Questions Questions for Evaluating Sources: Who created the source? What type of source is this? When was it created? Where was it created? Who was it created for? Why was it created? Questions from Economics lessons: Based on this document, should California raise the state minimum wage to$12.25 per hour? Explain.

Questions from Math lesson:
How much money do you need to barely survive in the Bay Area?
How much money do you make if you are paid minimum wage?
How much money would you make from the new Oakland law that increases the minimum wage?
What impact will raising the minimum wage have on small business owners?
What are your thoughts about how the increased minimum wage affects small business owners? List some pros and cons of raising minimums wage (for both employees and employers).

Questions from ELA lesson:
What is the lesson you learned from your individual interviews of people who have worked for minimum wage?
What is the message you want your audience to understand about working for minimum wage?
What is the message you want your audience to understand about the quality of life when working for minimum wage?
How will you draw people into your story? How will you show how one thing leads to another?
How do you end your story with impact?

1) During the unit where students are reading source documents provided by the district for the History Writing Task, students will answer the same guiding question, "Based on this document, should California raise the state minimum wage to $12.25 per hour? Explain." They will fill out a graphic organizer with their response to this question after each source reading. 2) This graphic organizer will be used as support for their text-based Socratic seminar. The teacher will periodically examine written responses to these questions (and/or observe responses in discussions) to see how well students are understanding information and applying close reading skills. 3) During the math lesson part of the Economics unit, will complete a graphic organizer that asks them to simulate their experience living on a budget and earning minimum wage. During the simulation, students will take breaks to reflect on, discuss and write responses to 3 sets of "Intermission" questions. Intermission 1 questions include, "What ideas do you have about the minimum wage now? Is it fair? Is it enough? Is it too much? Is raising the minimum wage a good idea?" Intermission 2 questions include, "Do you think that the new Oakland minimum wage will make a difference? What ideas do you have about the minimum wage now? Is it fair? Is it enough? Is it too much? Is raising the minimum wage a good idea?" Intermission 3 questions include, "What are your thoughts about how the increased minimum wage affects small business owners? List some pros and cons of raising minimums wage (for both employees and employers)." Students demonstrate developing understanding of statistical concepts and thinking in each of the math exercises they encounter through this graphic organizer. ## Summative Assessment The summative assessment is an essay for Oakland Unified School District's 12th grade End-of-Year History Writing Task which can be found by clicking the link below: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1quIYy4tAul5E377FPtLPzfnq7xEcnicAKwkkIAP7EXk/edit?usp=sharing ## Background Knowledge and Prerequisite Skills ### Pre-requisite Learning 1) Students should understand what a primary source is, and why it is important to understand the context in which a primary source has been produced. 2) Students should be able to identify key details or information in a text or display, and interpret that information accurately. 3) Students should be able to locate and interpret data represented in tables, and do basic interpretation of graphic displays of statistical information. ### Pre-assessment of Readiness for Learning 1) Brainstorm Prior Outside Knowledge: Students will recall what they already know about the minimum wage based on what they have learned inside and outside of class. 2) Create an Evidence/Argument T-Chart: To help visualize thoughts, students will create a T-Chart with evidence and/or supporting reasons to both sides of the minimum wage debate. One side of the T-Chart will be labeled "Yes-Raise to$12.25" and the other side of the T-Chart will be labeled "No-Do Not Raise to $12.25". ## Organization of Instructional Activities FIRST, in your ECONOMICS class, 1) Read through the 8 source documents. 2) Read, Highlight/Underline, and Annotate the Source Documents. As you read, highlight/underline and annotate documents, decide how each can be used, and label them accordingly. Take notes on the Graphic Organizer: "Pros and Cons of Raising Minimum Wage". You can download the graphic organizer by clicking https://docs.google.com/document/d/15MROrJfWmdA-T2gHvW6IKMyF4-hWTg8TKsnF5VCTYHc/edit?usp=sharing 3) After reading, highlighting and annotating each Source Document, answer the Guiding Question: Should California raise the state minimum wage to$12.25 per hour?
4) Use your Graphic Organizer during the Socratic seminar to help you exchange ideas, analyze multiple points of view, and make a personal decision about the issue.
5) Create your first process journal in your YouthVoices blog at www.youthvoices.net

1) Complete the graphic organizer that will help you in your simulation experience with what it would look like for you personally to live on the minimum wage. You can download the graphic organizer by clicking https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B36IOSAxpcS-bkdtdXJIVEFvdTdMdWVPTmFiYjRSTUN5MWZV/view?usp=sharing

THIRD, back in ECONOMICS class:
1) In pairs, conduct interviews of someone who has worked for minimum wage. You will ask questions like:
1) What did you earn?
2) What financial difficulties did you face?
3) If you were to earn an extra dollar what would that look like for you?
4) What were some examples of financial challenges that you faced that would be impacted by minimum wage?
5) Record your process for this pair project in your blog on YouthVoices.