Lyddie Final Assessment

Letters with Lyddie

Assignment: Now it's time to look back at the book, and connect what we learned about the characters, plot, setting and time of the book to big ideas.

Lyddie goes on with her life. She starts receiving letters from her dear friend, Diana. Please choose from the following letters, and write two responses to Diana, one from Column A, and one from Column B. Please include some made up information (how long after Lyddie leaves the factory, where she is, what she is doing), but be sure to answer the questions in the letter. Be sure to go inside Lyddie's thinking, and make it sound like her real thoughts. You will have to draw on textual evidence for answers from the book and from your RRJ.
Greetings, Lyddie!
I hope all is well. It has been a while since our time at the factory. I can't believe how much we have both grown and matured since that time. I have been thinking a lot about our time there. I know that you often told me that you chose to work at the factory of your own free will. But do you think that you really had a choice? What else would or could you have done? We could come and go as we pleased, which is more than most 13-year-old girls can say. How were we more free or less free than a normal girl living in her parents' home? I've started to think that slavery isn't as simple as a negro working on a Southern plantation. How do you think slavery can take on different forms? I'd be interested to hear your thoughts on this, as I always admired your wit and intelligence.
My dear friend Lyddie,
I'm sorry to keep pestering you. I know that you are busy. Please tell me what has been going on with you. I know that you have become interested in reading the Hebrew Bible, and talking with the Jewish people you have met recently. I'd be interested to hear what Jewish values would have to say about the treatment of workers. Are there any Jewish texts that give any guidance? What do these texts say? What are the big ideas behind these texts? What do you think all ethical people could learn from these texts? Do you think they could inform factory owners and managers? How? Do you think that these texts are just about how to treat your workers, or is there an even bigger lesson there? I'm always grateful for your insight. I feel as if I am getting an education through you.
Dearest Lyddie,
How are you? What did you decide to do? The last time we spoke, you told me that you were full of hope for the future—how do you think this has benefited you? I wonder if there was ever a time where you almost or completely gave up hope? What was the hardest part of your journey to the factory? Did having hope comfort you in any way or shape you as a person throughout this journey? You'll be happy to hear that my dreams have never subsided, and have finally paid off. I feel stable and contented, yet I still dream for even bigger things for me and my family. Do you think people still have hope, even if they achieve all of their dreams? What are your hopes these days?
Lyddie darling,
Isn't it amazing to think that there are still thousands of girls going through exactly what we went through? I'm constantly meeting factory girls, some of whom have very similar stories to yours and mine. I wonder how far industry has reached into the lives of people all over the country. Knowing what you know about industry, and about what some are calling an "industrial revolution," how have industry-wide changes affected the very real lives of people like you and I and all the other factory girls? How did this boom of machines and industry affect you and your family? What do you think this change will mean for society? Do you have any predictions about what it will mean for society that industry is becoming more and more about machines and mass production?