The Wheat Bubble Burst

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The Wheat Bubble Burst


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The stock market crashed on October 29, 1929, a day that would come to be known as "Black Tuesday." The crash punctured a speculative bubble that had been building throughout the 1920s, throwing one-and-a-half million Americans out of work. In three years, that number would triple. In response to the lower wheat prices, more wheat was planted.

Learning Objective:

Students will understand how the agricultural response to the Great Depression fueled the already dire ecological situation in the Great Plains, leading to the Dust Bowl. 

About the Author:

Eden McCauslin is a Social Studies and English teacher in Chicago Public Schools. Eden previously taught in the District of Columbia Public Schools

Content Standard(s):
Social Studies
SS2010 (2010)
Grade: 9
World History: 1500 to the Present
13 ) Explain challenges of the post-World War I period.

Examples: 1920s cultural disillusionment, colonial rebellion and turmoil in Ireland and India, attempts to achieve political stability in Europe

•  Identifying causes of the Great Depression
•  Characterizing the global impact of the Great Depression

Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
SS.AAS.9.13- Identify challenges in the United States after World War I.
SS.AAS.9.13a- Identify the causes and effects of the Great Depression including the stock market crash, collapse of farm economy, Dust Bowl, collapse of savings and loans banks, inflation, poverty, homelessness, soup kitchens, and unemployment.

Social Studies
SS2010 (2010)
Grade: 11
United States History II: The Industrial Revolution to the Present
6 ) Describe social and economic conditions from the 1920s through the Great Depression regarding factors leading to a deepening crisis, including the collapse of the farming economy and the stock market crash of 1929. [A.1.a., A.1.b., A.1.d., A.1.f., A.1.i., A.1.j., A.1.k.]

•  Assessing effects of overproduction, stock market speculation, and restrictive monetary policies on the pending economic crisis
•  Describing the impact of the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act on the global economy and the resulting worldwide depression
•  Identifying notable authors of the 1920s, including John Steinbeck, William Faulkner, and Zora Neale Hurston (Alabama)
•  Analyzing the Great Depression for its impact on the American family
Examples: Bonus Army, Hoovervilles, Dust Bowl, Dorothea Lange

Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
SS.AAS.11.6- Define economic depression; recognize the general causes of the Great Depression including overproduction of crops, stock market crash; recognize the effects of the Great Depression including collapse of the farm economy, unemployment, bank failure, homelessness and soup kitchens.

Tags: Black Tuesday, stock market crash of 1929, the Great Depression
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AccessibilityVideo resources: includes closed captioning or subtitles

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Author: Ginger Boyd