Haiku Poems about Factory Life in the Mills: First Hour

My 8th Grade Historians have been learning about life in Northern factories during the Industrial Revolution. The task today is to create haiku poems about factory life. This life was exciting for these children but was also very dangerous. Many girls worked in the mills because it was their only chance for independence in society and provided the opportunity to earn good money for themselves and contribute financially to their families. 

I would post these poems in the hallway but our hallways are currently being painted so this blog will be our display board for some of the the creative work my students have written today.

Working day and night
risking my life for money
little time to rest.

No windows open
almost like stuck in summer
just trapped in, not out.

Hot like the summer
lives falling away like leaves
as sad as winter.

Two books ain't enough
boarding takes half of my pay
the strikes haven't worked.

In summer it starts
each moment stifling hot
working to survive.

Leaves begin, like work
but leaves fall, dead to the ground
life my life does not.

Harsh like the winter
humid rooms like the summer
is it worth the pay?

Cotton cut fingers
offered money for young girls
deafening machines.

Where a mill girl starves
is forty six bucks enough?
choose what you will carve.

Working in a mill
Lucy had fun with her job
although it was harsh.

Hot, stuffy, humid
factories are like summer
except without fun.

Lowell girls started
at very young ages to
make money to live.

Young girls working hard
waking up very early
bad work area.

Working for low wages
very high risk of death
work fourteen hours.

Start at four thirty
lunch at twelve o'clock pm
end at six thirty.

Threads spinning
regretful decision
bruised hands throbbing

Hours of labor
passing through time working
seasons change while working.

Summer, fall working
Winter, spring weaving the string
just one buck per week.

Sad and dangerous
unhealthy air, nobody cares
no wages for me.

Lowell mill is cold
and as harsh as Michigan's 
very cold winter.

All the girls worked hard
if their hair was caught they die.
Life was hard like winter.

So many young girls
got their own money to use
conditions not good.

AL windows shut tight
no sunlight for the young girls
just like summer there


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