The Mudville baseball team is down two runs in the ninth inning, and the fans fall silent as they see the chances of winning are very slim. Some of the fans fall into despair, while the others continue to have hope that they can win - all of them wishing that Casey, the team’s star player, would be up next at bat. Unfortunately, Flynn, and Jimmy Blake would be up first, and there was no hope that they’d be able to get on base. Unexpectedly, Flynn gets on third base and Blake gets to second. Five thousand fans cheer, excited that Casey will be up next.
Casey approaches the plate with a smile and responds to all the cheers of the crowd. Ten thousand eyes eagerly watch as Casey prepares to bat. The ball is pitched, and the umpire calls a strike. The crowd is in an uproar at the call, but Casey calms them down by raising his hand. He smiles again and signals the pitcher to throw; the umpire calls another strike! Again, the crowd turns angry, but a scornful look from Casey and they all simmer down. The final pitch is thrown, and Casey swings with all his might, but strikes out and leaves all of Mudville unhappy.
Essential Questions for "Casey at the Bat"
Was Casey a success, or a failure? Why?
Did the people of Mudville treat the baseball players fairly? Why or why not?
How does the idea of hope and despair relate to baseball and other aspects of life?
[ELA-Literacy/RL/4/3] Describe in depth a character, setting, or event in a story or drama, drawing on specific details in the text (e.g., a character's thoughts, words, or actions).
In this activity, students will depict the characters of the poem, paying close attention to their character traits and identify the character’s actions that show these traits. Students will also identify the challenges these characters face.
In this activity, students demonstrate their understanding of vocabulary words using a Frayer Model. After choosing a word, students provide a definition, characteristics, examples (synonyms), and non-examples (antonyms) of the word. Students may be provided the vocabulary words, or they can use words that they have discovered through their reading of the text.
This example uses the word “tumult”.
Definition: violent, noisy commotion of a crowd
Characteristics:“With a smile of Christian charity great Casey’s visage shone; He stilled the rising tumult; he bade the game go on;”
[ELA-Literacy/RL/4/5] Explain major differences between poems, drama, and prose, and refer to the structural elements of poems (e.g., verse, rhythm, meter) and drama (e.g., casts of characters, settings, descriptions, dialogue, stage directions) when writing or speaking about a text.
In this activity students will identify the structural components of the poem including stanzas and lines. Students will also determine the rhyme scheme and the meaning of the stanza.