The Population of a City Changes Through Time
Students will examine population statistics for the City of Cleveland
from 1810 - 1990. Students will compare the population statistics
of African-Americans in the City of Cleveland with the overall
population statistics for Cleveland.
- How has the population of Cleveland changed through the years?
- What factors contribute to the slow or rapid growth in population
in a city?
- Begin by asking students if they know how many people live
in the city of Cleveland today? How do we know the population
statistics of a city? (the U.S. Census ) Review with students
information about the U.S. Census including that it is taken every
10 years. Why do we have a census? What can be done with the information
from a census?
- Explain to students that census population data can give historians
information about a community, its citizens, and how a city grows
and changes through time. Distribute Handout #1. and review with
students, noting how the chart should be read and what information
is contained on the chart. Distribute Handout #2. and discuss
with the class. This can be done as a class lesson, reviewing
and answering all questions in class, or you may choose to use
this lesson as a group or independent assignment.
- Once students have completed the worksheet, have them transfer
the population data for the City of Cleveland and African-Americans
onto a bar graph. This can be done individually on a sheet of
graph paper, or as a class activity on a large sheet of shelving
paper. Review the chart with students drawing their attention
to changes and patterns in population.
- As an extended activity, have students complete Handout #3.
Statistical Inferences Worksheet. This can be done as a group
activity. Be certain that students have texts and The Encyclopedia
of Cleveland History or Cleveland: A concise History,
1796-1990 by Carol Poh Miller and Robert Wheeler, to use
for reference and research when answering these questions.
- As an additional activity students may decide to conduct their
own census. They can complete a census of their classroom, other
classrooms of their grade, or the school community. They will
need to brainstorm what information they want to gather and then
develop the census questions. They will also need to decide how
they will gather the data, collate the information, and what they
will do with the data once the census has been completed. Focus
areas of discussion may include questions on how different the
census data would be if it was done in September in their classrooms
and again in May. What changes might occur? Why?