Baseball Statistics

Course(s)/Subject(s): Mathematics and English

Grade Level(s): Seventh and eighth grade

Key Words: Technology, Spreadsheet, Percentages, Data Analysis, Poetry, Editorial, and Persuasion

Developer(s) Name: Becky Groom and Denny Berry

School: Joyce Kilmer Middle School

Attached Files: Editorial Rubric

Approximate Time Frame: Five 47 minute periods

Materials/Equipment Needed: Computer Lab

Description of Lesson (includes context): After reading “Casey at the Bat” and discussing the sports “hero,” students use the Internet to research real baseball heroes. In groups, students compare individual baseball players’ hitting and/or pitching statistics and nominate one baseball hero per group. Students then justify their conclusions by creating spreadsheets and generating graphs of the data. Finally, students individually write a short editorial which incorporates a graph and tells why their player is a hero based on overall achievement as well as statistics.

(Extension: Students prepare a slide show using graphs and the editorial to convince the Baseball Hall of Fame committee that their player belongs in that organization.)

1. What is the objective of this lesson

VA FCPS POS Standards: Mathematics 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7
English: 1, 3, 4, 5
VA FCPS POS Benchmarks: Mathematics 1.4, 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 4.1, 5.1, 6.1, 7.1
English: 8.1-1, 8.1-2, 8.1-4, 8.3-1, 8.3-2, 8.3-3, 8.4-1, 8.4-2, 8.4-4, 8.5-1, 8.5-2
VA FCPS POS Indicators: Mathematics 1.4.1, 1.4.2, 3.1.1, 3.1.2, 3.2.2, 3.3.1, 3.3.2, 4.1.2, 5.1.2, 6.1.1, 6.1.2, 7.1.2,
English: Read a variety of forms: drama, poetry, novel, short story, nonfiction
Write a variety of forms
Select words and content appropriate to purpose, audience, form
Use sentence structure, form, and word choice to enhance meaning
Defend and support opinions
Synthesize information from multiple sources
VA FCPS SOL(s) (including Computer/Technology): Mathematics: 8.4, 8.13, 8.18
English: 8.3, 8.4, 8.5
Computer Technology: 8.1, 8.2, 8.3, 8.4


2. What will we examine as evidence of students’ knowledge and/or skill?

Product(s): Graph, Editorial (Possibly Slide Show)

Performance(s): Spreadsheet



3. What exactly will the students and teacher do during the lesson?

Directions to students for proceeding with the lesson:

  1. Read “Casey at the Bat” and discuss Casey as a hero. (English)
  2. Research and choose a player to bring to your group from the ESPN SportsZone site - As a group, make comparisons and decide on one “hero.”(Mathematics)
  3. Using the player chosen in Mathematics class, research further information about that player’s overall achievement. (English)
  4. Create and use a spreadsheet to generate graphs displaying/comparing the chosen player’s statistics against other players considered. (Mathematics)
  5. Using the writing process (prewrite, draft, revise, and edit), mini-lessons on persuasive writing and the rubric, draft an editorial that argues the chosen player is a baseball hero. Import the graph created in Mathematics. (English)

Directions to teacher/administrator using the lesson?

  1. Prerequisites: a. Enlist the help of PE teachers in ensuring that all students know the basic rules and conventions of baseball. b. Mathematics teacher should have completed the spreadsheet unit in Great Expectations and have discussed using percents as comparisons. c. English teacher should have taught newspaper writing and how to use persuasion in editorials.
  2. Read “Casey at the Bat” aloud to students; elicit discussion on the mock epic and the hero. (English)
  3. Bring students to the computer lab to conduct research. Students should print statistics regarding the player of their choice. (Mathematics)
  4. Students convert the raw statistical data into percentages and then compare percentages to arrive at a consensus baseball “hero.” (Mathematics)
  5. Bring students to the lab to conduct research. Students should take notes from the text at the ESPN web site. (English)
  6. Students need to choose no more than three baseball statistical categories (i.e., hitting, ERA, strikeouts) and create graphs which demonstrate their players’ excellence in those categories. (Mathematics)
  7. Using the rubric (see attachment), instruct the students in editorial writing. Have students draft their editorials, revise in peer writing groups, and exchange with partner editors. (English)
  8. Import the Mathematics graph into the revised editorial. Print the final draft.


4. What options in presentation(s) and/or response(s) are suggested in order to provide the opportunity for all students to demonstrate achievement of the benchmark(s) and indicator(s)?

In lieu of the editorial, students could write one persuasive paragraph in support of their chosen baseball “hero.” (English)

Students could choose one category of baseball statistics to graph. (Mathematics)