U.S. Steel Gary Works Photograph Collection, 1906-1971

Lesson 3: Book Education, Work and Play in One Building

Middle school : Lesson 1 | Lesson 2 | Lesson 3 | Lesson 4

Lesson plan developed by Laurie Welken.

"Book education, work and play in one building" was the plan of William Wirt, the superintendent of schools for Gary, IN during the early 1900s. He developed the Gary schools to incorporate all of these things into the one most important building in a child's life, their school. The Frobel School designed by Mr. Wirt combined technical schools with grammar schools. He combined parks and playgrounds with the school grounds. There were pools, gymnasiums, gardens and parks for the whole development of children. The school building was used in the evenings and on the weekends as well as school hours. Public institutions play a major role in our lives, and this institution made a great difference in the lives of Gary residents. Students will gain an understanding as to how the development of different institutions can differ and evolve with time. Perhaps Gary's schools were well ahead of their time.

Standards alignment

Guiding questions

Learning objectives

After completing this lesson, students will be able to:


Lesson plan

Extending the lesson