Sunday, February 8, 2009


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Summary: This book is about Jackie Robinson, the first African American on a major league baseball team, and how he is taunted, threatened, and excluded, even by many of his own teammates, because of the color of his skin. However, one of Jackie's teammates, Pee Wee Reese, stood up for him by putting his arm around Jackie during a baseball game for all of the jeering crowd to see and said, "I am standing by him, this man is my teammate," which caused the crowd to gasp and stop their jeering.

Reflection: I was really touched by this story. The majority of the book shows how hard it was for Jackie, how stoic he was, and how  hard it could be for a white person to stand up for a black person and do the right thing. However, the end of the book shows something very positive that came out of Jackie sticking to it despite how hard it was, and a white person doing the right thing and sticking up for his teammate. I like how the book is set up up pessimistically and ends optimistically because it confronts the harsh reality, but also gives hope.

Domains of social justice:
Self-love and acceptance- Jackie Robinson displays self-love and acceptance because he stays strong and calm despite being threatened and taunted, which I believe requires a great deal of self-love to be able to keep that inner peace.

Respect for others-Pee Wee  Reese models respecting others. He does not look at Jackie as a black person, but as his teammate and a talented baseball player, and he respects Jackie as both of those.

Exploring Issues of Social Justice-Pee Wee Reese stood up for justice. It was unfair that Jackie was being taunted or that others were trying to kick him off the team, because he was a great guy and a great baseball player. Pee Wee saw how unfair this was and did something about it. 

Social movements and social change- Jackie Robinson Pee Wee Reese, and Branch Rickey (whose idea it was to have Jackie on the team) were models/symbols of social change. They went against what was socially acceptable and risked being taunted and threatened to show the world that desegregation can work, that a black man and a white man can be supporting teammates of each other, and that people should stand up for the right thing.

Uses in the classroom: The story is well written, but I think it lacks power words and images. I think the students could make their own version of the story through a few powerful, select words and images.

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