What motivated U.S. American women to volunteer for war service during World War I, domestically and abroad?  How did their volunteer roles challenge traditional formulations of female duty to home and family? These lesson plans, designed for secondary school learners, help students explore through the ways that women’s lives and roles were transformed by volunteer service before and after 1917 through diverse primary sources.  They invites students, as well, to consider the interplay between women’s volunteer service and women’s pursuit of political and professional equality during World War I.

This topic is divided into five interrelated lesson plans that could be taught independently or as a whole, depending upon grade level, instructional objectives, and time:

  1. Activator, Advancing Toward Women’s Equality in the U.S.
  2. Lesson I, Images and Ideas about Women Volunteers
  3. Lesson II, A U.S. American Nurse in France: A Primary Source Analysis
  4. Lesson III, Women’s Volunteerism and Suffrage in the U.S.
  5. Extension Activity, Rights for Women Around the Globe: A Century of Change