You Forgot Your Skirt, Amelia Bloomer Extension Activity
- Grades: PreK–K, 1–2
About this book
Amelia Bloomer lived in the nineteenth century, when “proper women” wore heavy hoop skirts and tight corsets. Tired of being uncomfortable, Amelia dared to dress differently. Students will enjoy learning about the trend she started and how she affected women’s rights.
In the 1800s, women wore clothing that weighed between 20 and 40 pounds. Let your students experience how difficult it was to move carrying all that weight. Place a large book-bag on a bathroom scale. Let students take turns adding books, one at a time, until the scale reads 20 pounds. Give each child an opportunity to lift the bag and walk around the classroom. Ask them to imagine wearing all that weight every day!
Ask: How much do you think pants and a shirt weigh? Take out a child’s shirt and pants (bring them to school in advance), and place them on the scale. Compare the weight of the pants and shirt to the weight of women’s clothing in the 1800s.