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Will Jeremy Lin Be the First Asian-American NBA Draft Pick?


Arts & Humanities
--Language Arts
Physical Education
--Team Sports


Grades 2-up

News Content

Jeremy Lin might just lead Harvard University to its first NCAA championship series in 64 years.

Anticipation Guide

On a board or chart, write these two acronyms:
Ask students to identify what either of those acronyms stands for. (Some students are likely to know that NCAA is an acronym for the National Collegiate Athletic Association and that NBA is an acronym for the National Basketball Association.) Ask students what they know about the two organizations. Common terms such as March Madness and the NBA draft are likely to come up as part of the discussion.

News Words

Next, introduce these words that appear in the News Word Box on the students printable page: division, mimic, taunt, professional, percentage, and senior. Discuss the meanings of any of those words that might be unfamiliar. Then ask students to use one of those words to complete each of these sentences:

  • My uncle works in the manufacturing _____ of one of the big car companies. (division)
  • Only a small _____ of people voted in the recent election. (percentage)
  • The bully tried to _____ the young man, but he remained calm in spite of the name calling. (taunt)
  • Sally was in her _____ year of college, so she was working hard to find a job. (senior)
  • After my father hurt his back, we had to hire a _____ painter to paint the house. (professional)
  • The comedian could _____ dozens of famous people so well that you almost thought the real people were in the room. (mimic)
  • Read the News

    Click for a printable version of this weeks news story Will Jeremy Lin Be the First Asian-American NBA Draft Pick?.

    Reading the News

    You might use a variety of approaches to reading the news:

    Read aloud the news story to students as they follow along.

    Students might first read the news story to themselves; then you might call on individual students to read sections of the news aloud for the class.

    Photocopy the news story onto a transparency and project it onto a screen. (Or use your classroom computer's projector to project the story.) Read the story aloud as a class, or ask students to take turns reading it.

    Arrange students into small groups. Each student in the group will read a paragraph of the story. As that student reads, others might underline important information or write notes in the margin of the story. After each student finishes reading, others in the group might say something -- a comment, a question, a clarification -- about the text.

    More Facts to Share

    You might share these additional facts with students after they have read this weeks news story:

  • This year, Jeremy Lin is one of the most talked-about players in college basketball circles. As a senior guard, Lin is averaging 17 points a game. He has more than 4 rebounds and 4 assists in each game too. He has led his Harvard University basketball team to one of its best starts ever. (Click here for current NCAA Ivy League Conference standings.)
  • Lin has been featured on ESPN and in Time and Sports Illustrated magazines, and he has been mentioned as a possible NBA draft pick.
  • Lin was also among 30 players on the mid-season candidate list for the prestigious John Wooden Award, whose recipient is regarded as the national player of the year.
  • Jeremy Lin seems to be living his fathers dream. Gie-ming Lin grew up in Taiwan. He was a basketball junkie" who loved watching NBA video whenever he could. He moved to the United States in 1977 to earn a degree in computer engineering at Purdue University. As his boys grew, he took them to the gym three days a week to play basketball. When young Jeremy was five years old, he joined a kiddie basketball league. But he didnt show much interest in playing. Jeremy stood at half-court sucking his thumb for the entirety of about half his games that season," his older brother, Josh, recently told Time magazine. But things would soon change. Jeremy began to show skill and passion for the game, his father said. Soon, he was outplaying his brothers, his father, and the other kids.
  • In 2006, Jeremy led Palo Alto High School to a 32-1 record and the California state championship. In spite of the fact that he won nearly every player of the year" award given in northern California that year, few colleges showed interest in recruiting Jeremy. Many probably overlooked him because of their stereotypical belief that Asians cant play basketball. Jeremy finally agreed to go the Harvard, which has always been much better known for academics than sports. He played there in relative obscurity until last year, when he was the only player in the U.S. to rank among the top 10 players in his conference in every scoring category. But he still wasnt really on the radar," largely because Harvards basketball record was just 14-14.
  • Everywhere Lin plays, he has to put up with cruel taunts and racial slurs and jokes, all because he is Asian. I dont react to it," Lin told Time magazine. I expect it, Im used to it, it is what it is." I have to tip my hat to him," one of his teammates added. I dont know how Id react. He lets his game speak for itself. They can call him whatever they want."
  • Jeremy will not make any decisions about his future until after this basketball season is over. Until then we wont know if he will end up playing in the NBA, playing overseas, or enrolling in Harvard's MBA program.
  • Will Jeremy wind up being an NBA draft pick? That might not be known until the draft takes place in June. If he is picked, he will be the first Asian-American draft pick ever. That doesnt mean he will be the first Asian to play in the NBA though. He will have been preceded by Wat Misaka, a Japanese American who was the first non-white player in the NBA in 1947; 7-foot 6-inch Yao Ming; and others.
  • Use the News

    Print out this weeks Use the News printable activity page for students. Or use the questions on that page to check student comprehension.

    Use the News: Reading Comprehension. 1. 17; 2. 3; 3. 12 (he was 53" when he started playing basketball, and today is is 63" tall); 4. 32; 5. 18; 6. 56 (the last time a Harvard player played in the NBA was in 1954, which was 56 years ago [2010 1954 = 56 years]); 7. 64.
    Language Practice: Building Vocabulary. 1. c, 2. a, 3. d, 4. d, 5. b.
    Reading Comprehension: Main Idea. Jeremy Lin has created a lot of excitement among basketball fans.

    Follow-Up Activity

    Language: More acronyms. You might write some of these acronyms on a board or chart and see how many of them your students can identify:
    AC (Air Conditioning)
    ASAP (As Soon As Possible)
    ATM (Automated Teller Machine)
    B&B (Bed & Breakfast)
    BLT (Bacon, Lettuce & Tomato)
    CST (Central Standard Time)
    ET (Extra Terrestrial)
    FYI (For Your Information)
    OJ (Orange Juice)
    PIN (Personal Identification Number)
    TGIF (Thank God It's Friday)
    UFO (Unidentified Flying Object)
    UPC (Universal Product Code)


    Use the Comprehension Check (above) as an assessment. Or have students work on their own (in their journals) or in their small groups to respond to the Think About the News questions on the news story page or in the Comprehension Check section.

    Lesson Plan Source

    Education World

    National Standards

    LANGUAGE ARTS: English
    GRADES K - 12
    NL-ENG.K-12.2 Reading for Understanding
    NL-ENG.K-12.6 Applying Knowledge
    NL-ENG.K-12.9 Multicultural Understanding
    NL-ENG.K-12.11 Participating in Society
    NL-ENG.K-12.12 Applying Language Skills

    GRADES K - 12
    NPH.K-12.3 Physical Activity
    NPH.K-12.4 Physical Fitness
    NPH.K-12.5 Responsible Behavior
    NPH.K-12.6 Respect for Others
    NPH.K-12.7 Understanding Challenges

    See recent news stories in Education Worlds News Story of the Week Archive.

    Article by Gary Hopkins
    Education World®
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