Teach the Jackie Robinson Movie “42”

Today is the opening day of 42, the new movie about Jackie Robinson. Go see it opening weekend, then teach your class about it.

42 tells the story of two men whose brave stance against prejudice forever changed baseball—and the nation.  Chadwick Boseman plays Jackie Robinson.  Harrison Ford plays Branch Rickey, who signed Jackie for the Brooklyn Dodgers. Rickey said, “I may not be able to do something about racism in every field, but I can sure do something about it in baseball.” Jackie’s success became the crowning achievement of Rickey’s career in baseball.

In 1997, Major League Baseball retired Jackie’s number, 42, from every team, making it the first number in sports to be universally retired.

Visit the movie’s official website for background information, trailers, downloads, and more.  Watch the trailer here:

Teach your students more about Jackie Robinson:

I recommend you start with Peter Golenblock’s terrific book Teammates, about Jackie Robinson and teammate Pee Wee Reese.  The moment when Pee-Wee put his arm around Jackie Robinson is one of the most memorable in baseball, up there with Lou Gehrig’s farewell speech.

You will also enjoy Jackie’s Nine: Jackie Robinson’s Values to Live By. This book will help your students apply the lessons from Jackie’s courage and wisdom to their own lives. It is written and compiled by Jackie’s daughter, Sharon Robinson.

Major League Baseball has a wealth of information for teaching about Jackie Robinson.  Check it out here.

Click here to read about our First Lady’s “42” workshop for high school and college students at the White House. The panel was also attended by Robinson’s 90-year-old widow, Rachel; plus Harrison Ford, who plays Branch Rickey; Chadwick Boseman, who plays Jackie; and the film’s director, Brian Helgeland.  “We think that everybody in this country needs to watch this movie,” Michelle Obama said. “And I can say with all sincerity that it was truly powerful for us.”

Another good movie: The Jackie Robinson Story starring Jackie Robinson.  It’s a really good movie.  Jackie is a good actor.

I hope you and your students enjoy 42.

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Posted in Academics,Social Studies by Corey Green @ Apr 12, 2013


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