In the 1880s, thousands of Syrian/Lebanese immigrants came to the United States. Many settled in Texas. In the 1920s they discovered America’s national pastime—baseball—and formed teams and leagues. Lesson activities have students look at the immigrant experience in America and how baseball helped Syrian/Lebanese immigrants assimilate.

The following activities and text are abridged from “A League of Their Own,” written by Dianna Wray and photographed by Lisa Krantz.

Warm Up

Before students begin reading or looking at the activities, do this warm-up to hypothesize the theme and main idea of the article.

15-Minute Activity

In this activity students review several quotes on immigration and baseball from well-known Americans. Students then find evidence from the article that exemplifies one of the quotes.

Common Core Standard(s) Met:

CCRA.R.1 Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.

30-Minute Activity

In this activity students examine the immigrant experience for Syrian/Lebanese people in the United States during the early 20th century including how baseball played an important role in their lives.

Common Core Standard(s) Met:

Determine central ideas or themes of a text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas.

CCRA.R.7 Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse media and formats, including visually and quantitatively, as well as in words.

W.9-10.1 Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence.

Visual Analysis

In this activity students answer the question, “How do you make photographs of documents interesting?” 

Common Core Standard(s) Met:

RI.9-10.7 Analyze various accounts of a subject told in different mediums (e.g., a person's life story in both print and multimedia), determining which details are emphasized in each account.