Thursday, January 10, 2008

Louis Sockalexis: Discussion Opportunities

Whether you're a parent, teacher, librarian, or anyone else who enjoys reading books with kids, Louis Sockalexis: Native American Baseball Pioneer is a great book that will inspire discussion.
It can be a short conversation or can be expanded into more in-depth learning activities or lessons. Here are just a few ideas.

  • Discuss the sport and its most prominent figures, past and present
  • Tell your child Jackie Robinson's story who faced similar issues as Louis Sockalexis
  • Compare and contrast the game today to the game back then; in the book, there are many obvious differences, both in the text and illustrations
  • Talk about your favorite team or players
  • If you or your child plays baseball, discuss an important game you or he/she played
Native Americans
  • Talk about the Native American culture, their traditions, and the pride they have in their land and people; why was it important for Louis's father to accept him? What impact did Louis's achievements have on his people?
  • Discuss a Native American tribe in your area if applicable
  • Visit a museum or exhibit that features Native American culture, art, people
  • Talk about other famous Native the past and present. How are they portrayed in the textbooks and culture?
Racism and Prejudice
  • Louis was treated poorly because he was a Native to your child about how he/she felt about this and how they think Louis felt. Talk about his strength and determination.
  • What other groups are victims of racism? Discuss the Civil Rights Movement and the Trail of Tears.
  • Have they witnessed or experienced racism first-hand? Have you?
  • How should you respond when someone makes a racist remark or joke? What should you do if someone is being treated unfairly?
  • What is the difference between racism and prejudice? What groups are victims of prejudice?
Any other ideas?

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