Mo'Ne Davis and Gender Stereotypes

Gender & Sexism
People, Identity & Culture
Mo'Ne Davis Little League World Series Baseball Pitch
AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar
Grade Level:
Elementary School
Common Core Standards:
Reading, Speaking and Listening
Gender & Sexism
People, Identity & Culture

The First Girl to Pitch a Shutout in the Little League World Series

In 2014 Mo’Ne Davis, a 13-year-old girl, made news headlines as the first girl to ever pitch a shutout in the Little League World series. At that time she was considered the “most talked about baseball player on earth right now” according to many observers in the sports world. Mo’Ne (pronounced Moh-nay) played baseball for the Taney Dragons of Philadelphia, PA. She was the only girl on her team, the first American girl to play in the Little League World Series since 2004 and is only the eighteenth girl to have played in the sixty-eight-year history of the Little League World Series. She was on the cover of Sports Illustrated, the most prominent sports magazine and Sports Illustrated Kids. In 2018, Mo’Ne chose Hampton University to attend and play softball.

Title IX and Sex Discrimination

In 1972, a law called Title IX was passed, which banned discrimination based on gender in education programs. Before Title IX, a girl would not have been able to play baseball with boys. One of the most important impacts of the law was girls’ ability to play sports. For example, before Title IX, one in 27 girls played varsity high school sports. By 2001, one in every 2.5 girls played. The year before Title IX was enacted, there were about 310,000 girls and women in America playing high school and college sports; today, there are more than 3,373,000.

About the Lesson Plan

This elementary lesson provides an opportunity for students to learn more about Mo’Ne Davis and, at the same time, explore gender stereotypes about sports and in other areas of their lives.

Learning Objectives:

  • Students will explore their own unconscious bias about girls and sports.
  • Students will understand the term stereotype and how it relates to gender.
  • Students will reflect on the negative effects of gender stereotypes.
  • Students will learn more about Mo’Ne Davis and her potential to dispel stereotypes.

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