During World War II, many materials were in short supply, including metal, rubber, and gasoline. Since many items were needed for the troops, people at home often had to do without them and change their lifestyles. For example, since meat was needed to feed the soldiers, Americans back in the United States were asked to give up meat one day a week. They were also asked to raise some of their own vegetables in “Victory Gardens,” so the farms could send more of what they grew to the troops. Many people organized “scrap metal drives” where discarded metal (tin, steel, etc.) would be collected and sent to a recycling center so it could be used to make tanks, jeeps, canteens, shells, and other items for the war. Since silk was needed to make parachutes, women often couldn’t buy stockings. (Some women even painted black lines down the backs of their bare legs to make it look like they were wearing stockings!) Homemakers were asked to donate their leftover cooking fats and oils to the military, since these items could be processed and made into explosives used in the war. (In fact, the Brooklyn Dodgers baseball team even had a “kitchen fats” day, where you could get into the game for free if you brought a can of kitchen fat with you to donate to the war effort!) (To find out more about what Americans did at home to help the war, click here.)


Imagine you are a student during World War II. List FIVE things you could do to help the war effort at home. In making your list, consider including: