Jackie Robinson Deserves More Than One Day

AIM: To make inferences about the life of Jackie Robinson.
DO NOW: Match the word from the word box to the definition below.
1.(n)cooperative or coordinated effort on the part of a group of persons
acting together in the interests of a common cause.
2.(n)making a promise and following through on it.
3.(n)treating all people fairly.
4.(n)making a contribution that improves the lives of others.
5.(n)staying focused on a plan even though it is difficult.
6.(n)doing the best that you possibly can.
7.(n)working towards a goal and continuing to move forward even
through obstacles.
8.(n)doing what you know is the right thing even when it is hard to
9.(n)sticking to your values, regardless of what others think you
VOCBULARY IN ACTION: Pick two of the words from the word box and complete the
following sentence prompts:
1. A person that values __________ will always________________________________
2. A person that values __________ will rarely________________________________
ACTIVITY: We will be watching a clip about the life of Jackie Robinson.
As you watch the clip, you will complete the graphic organizer with facts from his life
that reflect the values that he lived by.
Jackie Robinson’s Nine Values
Jackie Robinson’s values demonstrate that he would always____________________________
Jackie Robinson’s values demonstrate that he would rarely____________________________
DIRECTIONS: Read the following article about Jackie Robinson and underline and
identify in the margins examples of each of Jackie Robinson’s nine values.
Jackie Robinson Deserves More Than One Day
USA Today, April 12, 2012
Byline: Chris Lamb
Sunday is Jackie Robinson Day in major league ballparks, where the ballplayer and his
legacy will be remembered with tributes and testimonials. All big-league players will
wear Robinson's number 42 on their backs, the only number in sports retired in
It is important to remember that Robinson broke major league baseball's color line on
April 15, 1947. But if we restrict Robinson's influence to baseball, we do both him and
what he accomplished a tremendous disservice. He was arguably the most important
civil rights figure, and the integration of baseball the most important civil rights story, in
the years immediately after World War II.
When he played his first game for the Dodgers on April 15, 1947, he carried the hopes
and dreams of millions of blacks. If Robinson succeeded in baseball, as civil rights
leader Roy Wilkins had earlier said, it meant blacks "should have their own rights,
should have jobs, decent homes and education, free from insult, and equality of
opportunity to achieve."
Success vs. failure
Never before -- and never since -- had so much been riding on one athlete. If Robinson
succeeded, he succeeded for all blacks. If he failed, he would affirm the belief of many
whites at the time that blacks were inferior.
Nobody in sports ever had more at stake and no one ever suffered more. Nobody in
baseball ever received such vile abuse from fans and opponents. Opposing pitchers
threw at him. Opposing base runners spiked him. He received death threats routinely.
Robinson's strength in the face of those threats and unspeakable obscenities
demonstrated non-violent resistance long before it was practiced in places such as
Selma, Birmingham, Montgomery and other Southern cities and towns.
The integration of baseball came years before the civil rights movement had a name
and years before the country had heard of Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks or Brown
v. Board of Education.
Feat transcends baseball
King said that Robinson's courage in confronting the color line in baseball helped lay the
groundwork for the civil rights movement. "Back in the days when integration wasn't
fashionable," King said, "he underwent the trauma and humiliation and the loneliness
which comes with being a pilgrim walking the lonesome byways toward the high road of
freedom. He was a sit-inner before sit-ins, a freedom rider before freedom rides."
Robinson succeeded -- and his success cured many Americans of their belief that
blacks were inferior and convinced many others that blacks should have the same
opportunities as whites.
"As their champion, Robinson had taken their hopes into the arena of baseball and
succeeded beyond their wildest dreams," Arnold Rampersad wrote in his biography of
Robinson. "Neither blacks nor whites would be quite the same thereafter in America."
If Jim Crow seems distant today, it is because of men like Robinson. We need to
remember him for what he accomplished inside the white lines of baseball, but we also
need to remember him for what he accomplished outside. His life teaches us that
progress often depends on individuals willing to sacrifice themselves for something
Walking into the most hostile of winds for so long took its toll on Robinson. When he
died in 1972 of complications from heart disease and diabetes, he was nearly blind and
crippled, and his hair was white. He was just 53.
His gravestone reads: "A life is not important except in the impact it has on others'
Chris Lamb is a professor of communication at the College of Charleston and the author
of Conspiracy of Silence: Sportswriters and the Long Campaign to Desegregate
Full Text: COPYRIGHT 2012 USA Today.
Respond to this quote from Jackie Robinson’s gravestone: "A life is not important
except in the impact it has on others' lives." How does this demonstrate his nine