December 19, 2021
Orioles/USA Baseball Curriculum Is A Home Run with Students and Staff
Play Ball Day and Fun At Bat Teach Physical Literacy, Social Emotional Skills
Quick, what’s 3 x 11? If you answered, “Hall of Fame Oriole Eddie Murray,” (or 33) you would have been the MVP of Jersey Math, part of Play Ball Day on October 25 at Beechfield Elementary/Middle School.
610 students joined Orioles volunteers, including Orioles legend Al Bumbry — for an afternoon of instruction in the history and skills of baseball — inspiring recreational play and teaching life lessons of teamwork, perseverance, and resilience.
After an opening ceremony, students learned the fundamentals of throwing, hitting, fielding, and base running through interactive games such as “Catch Tag,” “Alligator Arms,” “Relay Throwing Race,” and “Hitting Derby.”
In addition to building physical skills, students took on baseball-themed challenges that promoted math and literacy. Games included Jersey Math (solving math equations with the jersey number of a former or current Orioles) and a reading activity about the history of the Negro Leagues — featuring the Baltimore Black Sox and Elite Giants along with local greats including Leon Day.
“Promoting academic and life skills through an afternoon of baseball is a great example of how physical education supports the whole child,” said Geoff Meehle, Coordinator - Health and Physical Education. “The Orioles and Play Ball Day give students choices and opportunities in their learning with an emphasis on personal best and improvement.”
In addition to Play Ball Day, the Orioles and USA Baseball also offer the national Fun At Bat physical education curriculum (as well as free equipment) to schools across the district. Since 2018, 68 schools have adopted the program, which includes active warm-up exercises and activities that support the age-based physical literacy standards of the Society of Health and Physical Educators (SHAPE America).
Those standards define what a student should know and be able to do as a result of a highly effective physical education program and are crucial to physical education’s efforts at social-emotional learning — an emphasis of the student wholeness component of our Blueprint for Success.
“Teachers and students love the curriculum, and its emphasis on physical literacy and character development have made an incredibly positive impact on City Schools staff and students,” said Mr. Meehle.
With efforts like Play Ball Day and Fun At Bat, our friends at Camden Yards are going to extra innings to support our students’ well-being and meet their academic, social, emotional, and physical needs.