"Baseball Saved Us"
Multicultural Picture Book
"Baseball Saved Us"
- Winner, Parents' Choice Award
- Winner, Washington State Governor's Writers Award
- Best Multicultural Title, "Cuffies Award" - Publishers Weekly
- "Editors' Choice" - San Francisco Chronicle
- "Choices," Cooperative Children's Book Center (CCBC)
- "Pick of the Lists," - American Bookseller
- Washington State Children's Choice Award Finalist
Author and Illustrator
Ken Mochizuki was approached by an up and coming publisher, and was asked to write a children's book. After being sent an article about Japanese American's forming baseball teams in the internment camps, he decided to write a historical fiction piece about a boy named "Shorty," that was a hero not only once, but twice in the book! The success of the book jump-started his career as a children's book author.
Illustrated by: Dom Lee
Dom Lee is the illustrator of many children's books. He sometimes collaborates with his wife when illustrating, so some of his work is a combination of ideas and artistic ability. The result of that collaboration is beautiful, as seen in Baseball Saved Us.
Evaluation of Multicultural Elements
2. The first question I will ask is "How would you feel if you and your family had to leave your home to live in an uncomfortable camp?" This will get them thinking about how the boy in the book felt.
3. I will also give them the vocabulary words to think about while we read. I will review the words with them using the whiteboard, so they will know what they mean when we get to them in the book.
- irrigation: is the artificial application of water to the land or soil. It is used to assist in the growing of agricultural crops, maintenance of landscapes, and revegetation of disturbed soils in dry areas and during periods of inadequate rainfall.
- barrack: small living space, usually for soldiers
4. I will read the story. After page 8, I will ask "Why did Teddy get upset with his father? Was he upset about their situation?"
5. After page 19, I will ask "Why isn't the boy happy to be home?"
6. After page 21, I will ask "Why is the boy so nervous to play, when he knows he can play well like he did in camp?"
7. At the end of the book, I will ask the final question. "After reading this book, how will you treat people or friends that are different than you?"
8. As a final activity and closure, I will have them write their answer to the final question in a narrative format, and make flashcards for the two vocabulary words.