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This is also good lesson to use in order to teach or review cause and effect.  ELL students can learn the signal words for cause and effect, such as:  because, so, since (beginning level), led to, brought about, produced (intermediate level), as a result of, so that, since, therefore (advanced level).  Teacher and students can list causes and effects of the cotton gin.  Then students can put a sentence together using the list and a signal word.  Teacher can also put these phrases on index cards and students can go around the room finding the partner that matches either their cause or their effect (these are written on the index card).  Next, the students can put their cause and effect in a sentence or several sentences using different signal words for cause and effect. Examples:  The cotton gin took the seeds out of cotton easier and faster, therefore more cotton could be cleaned per day.  Since the cotton gin took the seeds out of cotton easier and faster, more cotton could be cleaned per day.  Because more cotton could be cleaned per day, more slaves could be used to pick cotton.  The cotton gin brought an increased production of cotton.  More slaves were needed to pick cotton as a result of the invention of the cotton gin.

Students can also write a newspaper article featuring their new invention.  A book entitled, The Inventor’s Times by Dan Driscoll and James Zigarelli, published by Scholastic Books, is great for showing examples of newspaper articles that feature new inventions.
Below are two graphs.  The first graph shows the rise of cotton production in the South and the rise in the number of slaves.  The second graph shows what percentage of the South’s exports was cotton. Students should notice that as the cotton production increased, so did the need for slaves. Is it good to have an economy so dependent on one crop or skill?  What other countries have had similar experiences with a one crop or skill economy?  What effect did it have on them?   Have students deduce from the graphs the effect of the cotton gin on the South, their economy, and even the change in their way of life.  If your students are advanced or GATE, you can have students research the growth in the outsourcing of jobs in the United States to other countries and deduce what effect that is having and willhave in the United States.