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MLB Breaking Barriers

Breaking Barriers Lesson Plans

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Welcome Teachers!

2015 Grand Prize Winner Malcolm Venable of New Orleans, LA, with teacher Katrina Armour (right) and Sharon Robinson, daughter of Jackie Robinson.

I’m happy to announce that 2016 marks the 20th anniversary of Breaking Barriers: In Sports, In Life! This educational program not only brings classrooms the story of my father, Jackie Robinson, and his breaking of the color barrier in baseball in 1947, but also extends his legacy of change to students today.

Created by Major League Baseball and developed with Scholastic, Breaking Barriers teaches students the values and characteristics that my father exhibited in his life and how to use them to face and overcome barriers in their own lives. At the heart of the program is the Breaking Barriers Essay Contest, which gives diverse students from across the country the opportunity to write about their own barriers, along with a chance to win valuable prizes.

I hope you and your students take part in Breaking Barriers!




Sharon Robinson
Consultant, Community Affairs & Educational Programming, Major League Baseball

Photos: Lesson 1, Courtesy Robinson Family; Lessons 2 and 3, Courtesy MLB Photos.


LESSON 1: What Are Barriers?
LESSON 1: What Are Barriers?
Through reading and class discussion, students will understand who Jackie Robinson was and what the concept of a barrier means.
LESSON 2: Values and Barriers
LESSON 2: Values and Barriers
Through reading and class discussion, students will understand what values are and how they are important in facing barriers.
LESSON 3: Essay Organizer
LESSON 3: Essay Organizer
Students will understand important steps in the essay-writing process as they write an essay that can be entered in the Breaking Barriers Essay Contest.
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