Students will need the following supplies:
| Divide the students into small discussion groups. Within
the groups, students should read the following:
| In the group, students should discuss what the unifying
theme is. Each group should get a copy of the Baseball Reading Organizer which includes questions for them to consider
as they are reading.
| After brainstorming their ideas in groups, come together
as a full class to discuss why people are so connected to these sports
arenas. For schools outside of the New York City region, it would
be good for teachers to come prepared with information and photographs
of the local major or minor league stadium. Information about high
school or university stadiums would be appropriate as well.
|At this point, show the one hour "NEW YORK SPORTS: BIG
SHOTS AND BAD GUYS" episode of Thirteen's NEW YORK VOICES.
| After watching the show, consider the question again.
What makes sports teams and the spaces that they play in so special?
| Learning Activities:
|As a class, brainstorm a list of the players
and owners who were mentioned in the show.
| Based on the information that students learned from the show
and what they know as sports fans, the class should write poems
or essays about the players that were featured in the NEW YORK VOICES
episode. In the end, the class will have a collection of poetry
that can be put together in a book. It is important for the teacher
to look at the distribution of the players that the students select
so there aren't too many poems about one player and none on
| The poetry and essay writing will probably
take a couple of sessions for brainstorming, peer editing, and publishing.
Remind students how Roger Angell, Doris Kearns Goodwin and W.P. Kinsella
communicated their feelings about their teams and the stadiums that
they played in. For example, what was it like for Bobby Thomson to
hit "The Shot Heard Round the World" in the 1951 pennant
race in the enemy territory of the Brooklyn Dodgers' Ebbets
Field? What were John Rocker's comments about the 7 train that
goes to Shea Stadium and how did he feel when he played at that stadium?
| Encourage students to search the Internet
for photos of the players as well.
| Culminating Activity/Assessment:
| The final project for the unit will be to put together
a tourist brochure for each student's favorite sports arena
and/or stadium. If you want the focus to remain on the NEW YORK VOICES
show, then students should focus on Yankee Stadium, Shea Stadium,
Ebbets Field, the Polo Grounds, Madison Square Garden, and Giants
Stadium where the New York Giants and the New York Jets play.
| The students' brochure should include information about
the building's history, architecture and lore. Distribute and go over
the rubric with students. The
rubric lists all of the brochure's required information. You should
collect tourist brochures prior to teaching the lesson so the students
can use them as models for their final projects.
| Allow for research and design time. This can be an
individual or group project, depending on the size of the class and
the ability of the students. Remind students that they are creating
a tourist brochure and/or booklet that should entice visitors to the
ballpark for a fun-filled afternoon or evening with their family and
friends. How will they convey that while including all of the required
| Finally, allow time for presentations and question
and answer sessions.