Living Legacy icon

Who’s your hero?

Baseball cards allow fans of all ages to celebrate their favorite players. Create a baseball card to honor an important person in your life. Jackie Robinson is important to a great many people, because he risked his own safety to work for fairness and equal treatment for all, which made our country better.

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Activity Section

Make your own Living Legacy card

Context and Instructions

A legacy is anything that is passed down by someone who is no longer alive. It is usually an idea or actions that the person performed that is worth remembering and that still affects people. Jackie opened doors for other black players who followed him by playing well and proving that people should not be treated differently because of their skin color. Outside of baseball, he worked on behalf of African Americans, and other groups that were mistreated, to ensure they were paid fairly, and had affordable and safe housing and good schools. He had the courage to challenge the unfairness that other people accepted as normal. By standing up for others, Jackie helped to change laws and behavior all over the country to make life better for everyone. That is Jackie Robinson’s legacy.

What did you learn about Jackie in Chapter 9 of Jackie Robinson: American Hero that makes you agree that his legacy is important today? What does his legacy mean to you? What should it mean? Check out the warm up activity in the Got Game? section before you get started!

This project is meant to honor a living legacy, meaning to celebrate someone who has done something special and who is still alive. This doesn’t have to be a baseball player or any type of athlete. We remember Jackie as much for what he did off the baseball field as we do for what he did in baseball. So, let’s get started making your Living Legacy Card.

Our Living Legacy cards are modeled after baseball cards, which have been collected by baseball fans for nearly 160 years. Each card usually has an image of the player on the front and information about the player on the back. Take a look at some of the baseball cards of Jackie from the Jackie Robinson Museum’s collection below these instructions. Identify all the parts of the card—such as picture, his name, birthdate, team name, team symbols, baseball uniform, batting record, and position he played. What else do you see?

Make your own baseball/legacy cards:

  1. Think of a family member, friend, or person in your school or neighborhood who is special because that person helped you or someone else, like doing something good for your school or neighborhood. The person may have even encouraged you to do something good. This is the person you will honor by making a Living Legacy card about them. If you are printing our template to use, skip to step 5.
  2. Get two pieces of paper—any color is fine as long as you can write on it.
  3. Draw a rectangle on each piece of paper. If you have a ruler, measure the parallel sides so the long side is 6 inches and the short side is 4 inches; otherwise, you can estimate.
  4. Cut out both rectangles.
  5. On one rectangle (the front side), draw a picture of the person and add their name. If you have a photograph of the person, you can use that instead. Decorate it with symbols that describe that person (such as their special qualities or their job.)
  6. On the other rectangle (back), add the following:
    • The person’s name
    • The person’s special qualities
    • What specifically made you choose that person
    • How the person inspires you to do something positive for others
  7. Tape both sides back-to-back and your card is done! (If you used the template, that was already done.)
  8. Have an adult help you post a photo or video of your Living Legacy card on social media and tag @JRFoundation on Twitter and Instagram or @JRF42 on Facebook.
  9. Design as many cards as you want, then trade with your family members and discuss whom you chose.

Inspiration & Examples

Before you get started, take a look at our inspiration to help you make a great project! Some of these resources are from the Jackie Robinson Museum’s archival collection while others are from the web. What will you create?

Credits: (From left to right)

  1. Topps #312 Jackie Robinson trading card, 1952
    Jackie Robinson Museum Collection
  2. Topps Tribute #47 Jackie Robinson “Color Barrier is Broken” trading Card, 2002
    Jackie Robinson Museum Collection
  3. Topps #50 Jackie Robinson trading card, 1955
    Jackie Robinson Museum Collection
  4. Topps #1 Jackie Robinson trading card, 1953
    Jackie Robinson Museum Collection
  5. Topps #10 Jackie Robinson trading card, 1954
    Jackie Robinson Museum Collection
  6. Topps #10 Jackie Robinson trading card, 1954
    Jackie Robinson Museum Collection
  7. Leaf #79 Jackie Robinson rookie trading card, 1948
    Jackie Robinson Museum Collection
  8. Fleer Ultra Tribute #5 Jackie Robinson FanFest trading card, 1997
    Jackie Robinson Museum Collection
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Put me in, coach

Jackie Robinson believed in the power of young people to make positive change. This starts with being thoughtful about the things that are important to you and those you care about. These activities are designed to help you think about those things, while you also learn about the things that mattered to Jackie Robinson.