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Felipe Alou: l’histoire d’un grand champion on Pinterest: 

-Teacher Tip: add in front of any web address to turn any French-language website into an interactive glossary! Every word on the page will be defined in English with a click. Unlike translation sites, this encourages students to read in French until they actually get stuck.


Documentaire: Les visages d’Hispaniola 2017 Durée 27:51 

French with French subtitles.  Discover the history of the island, and the origins of the French/Spanish conflicts that led to El Corte 

Baseball infographic in French about Derek Jeter from Reseau des Sports Canada, date unknown 

Chapter 1

Dominican Representation in the MLB: 

English Article on Dominican players in the MLB

English Infographic 1995-2016 % of players from the DR in the MLB

Un Signe Distinctif: Perejil was the shibboleth that Trujillo’s men used to tell Haitians from Dominicans.

“A shibboleth is any custom or tradition, usually a choice of phrasing or even a single word, that distinguishes one group of people from another.  Shibboleths have been used throughout history as passwords, ways of self-identification, signaling loyalty and affinity, maintaining traditional segregation, or protecting from real or perceived threats.”


Song about notorious British English shibboleths.  Watch without sound and have the class read the words. Then listen, how did we do?

Shibboleth. 2014.  Durée: 2:26 

Parisians try to Pronounce words in English. 2019. Durée 3:07  

Appropriate for high school, the word “chiant” is used but is translated as “sucks”. Students enjoy seeing their own language through the perspective of non-native speakers. This video pairs well with the following videos, which turn the tables!

American try to pronounce words in French. 2020 Durée 3:27 

Can you pronounce these 10 French words? 2017. Durée 3:40

-This video shows a variety of people from different native languages (one of them whispers a curse word at 0:49) trying to say a word that is projected.  The last person to say the word is the French speaker.  Students enjoy giving these tough (and often infrequently used words) a try and seeing how close they come. 

Online Articles in French from online magazine Haïti Liberté  

Pourquoi la pratique du baseball en Haïti?  June 17 2018

Production de balles de baseball en Haïti et l’impérialisme américaine! August 26 2019, investigative journalism article

Felipe Alou was from the Island of Hispaniola, which consists of Haiti and the Dominican Republic.  In the DR, they speak Spanish. In Haiti, their official language is French, but they also speak Haitian Creole.  Here’s a link to a video that will teach Creole pronouns to your students!

This short video shows what life is like for Haitian migrant sugarcane field workers.  They work 15-18 hour days for the equivalent of $3. They live in camps called batays.

This is a documentary from PBS on Haiti and the Dominican Republic, including the Parsley massacre.

A history of the DR.  This has Spanish text with English narration.

The film “In the Time of the Butterflies” (English language) rated PG-13 is the story of Minerva Mirabal, who, along with her husband and two sisters was murdered by the Trujillo regime for her outspoken criticism.  Available on Amazon.  You might opt to show 1-2 scenes just to illustrate the Trujillo era.

Chapitre 2

Les Plus Beaux Endroits de la RD: Feb 2018, high quality.  Durée 3:27  

République Dominicaine : les Haïtiens entre chômage et exclusion 2012  Durée 2:10  

“Haïti est l’un des pays les plus pauvres de la planète. Pour échapper à la misère, des centaines d’Haïtiens passent la frontière vers le pays voisin, la République Dominicaine. Une fois là-bas, ils sont confrontés au chômage, et à la discrimination.”

L’école en France:  

An Infographic that explains French grades and classes by age.  In Chapitre 2 we learn that Felipe is selected for the national team when he’s in “first” grade.  And in Chapitre 3 we learn that he participates in the Central American games as a student in terminale.If you haven’t yet taught the vocab for each grade, this infographic  can help.  This makes a great IPA (Integrated Performance Assessment) task and can take a whole class period or more, depending on how far you want to dig.  CLICK HERE for more information on what an IPA is and how to use it (Appendix D and F) is a fantastic resource with many slideshows depicting the Dominican Republic.  Enjoy!

Chapitre 3

Video: Navy SEAL obstacle course 2011 Durée 12:00 

Felipe has to train all the time, and must obey particular rules that discourage any social interaction with women.  Here is a video that shows the obstacle course that Navy Seals must complete in less than 12 minutes 

Video: Javelin Drills: Les phases du lancer le javelot. 2015.  Durée 7:28 avec texte descriptif en français 

Video: Lancer le Javelot: Le Vocabulaire.  2016.  Durée 5:22 

Video: Top 5 Javelin throwers from 2018. Durée: 3:20  Music only.

Chapitre 4

Comment Bien Frapper une balle de baseball 2011 durée 2:11

Written Descriptions in French are displayed throughout the video to explain the steps. 

MLB Weirdest Batting stances 2016 durée 7:07

(Example number one is Moises Alou!) A fun video that contradicts the above video.  Good for brain breaks

Online Inflation Calculator: Felipe is paid $200 in 1955 when he signs his contract with the NY Giants.  How much is that in today’s dollars?

-Activity to practice numbers: As a class conversation using the sentence starter “Je parie que $200 en dix-neuf cents cinquante-cinq valent ____ aujourd’hui”.  Keep track of students’ names and guesstimates on the board. Then have students guess who is most likely correct!.

Double check the answer using this online inflation calculator. 

Chapitre 5

This chapter starts with Felipe’s troubles obtaining a Visa.  Many students don’t know what a Visa is, or how to get one.  As an enrichment activity or an Integrated Performance Assessment, you could download a Visa application and have your students attempt to fill it out in French.

The immigration process to the United States is another topic of conversation that may interest or relate to your students.  Some of our students are immigrants or the children of immigrants themselves, and may choose to volunteer and share prior knowledge to the class discussion about our current immigration process.  This website explains the green card process. As always, be sensitive to those students who may not want to discuss their own personal or family experiences. 


Chapitre 6

Students might be shocked to learn that it’s a three day bus ride from Lake Charles to Cocoa, including all of the bus stops and rest stops. How has bus travel changed over time?  Here is the site for Greyhound, which travels from Lake Charles to Orlando, the closest stop to Cocoa today.

Famine Food Legends #1: Haitian Mud Cakes 

July 19, 2013 from World Food Programme

Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere and when journalists report about hunger there, they sometimes make reference to people eating cakes made out of mud. Known locally as “galette” these cakes are made out of a special kind of mud that’s rich with minerals. People don’t usually eat them out of desperation, but as a kind of traditional medicine. (Watch until the end when they show you how much Americans will pay for French clay pills!  )


Students like to discuss how long they can actually go without food (and water) in order to understand the reality behind Felipe’s experience on the bus to Florida.  The following video can be used to show the affects of fasting on the mind and body. Auto-generated subtitles are pretty accurate, with lots of big texts, titles, and expressive images to facilitate general comprehension of the video.  

Que se passerait-il si tu ne mangeais rien pendant 7 jours. 2018  durée 9:17 

Chapitre 7

Les hamburgers fait maison. 2017. Durée 8:15

Quand le virage se met à chanter

Here are some videos with different variations of this popular song:

Chapitre 8

Racism in American Housing.  2016. Durée: 1:24 

 A history of racist housing policies has kept many Americans from owning their homes. And today, white Americans are almost twice as likely to own their homes as black Americans.

Chapitre 9

Baseball Vocabulary 

Online Batting Average Calculator: 

Samuel Eto’o fights racism: an article from 2015 about a Nigerian footballer being discriminated against by a shop clerk.

Kneeling to protest racism: article from

Well-balanced article that briefly explains the Colin Kaepernick’s decision in 2016 to take a knee during the national anthem to stand up for racism.  The article ends with asking veterans to weigh in with their opinion: “Do you believe kneeling to protest during the national anthem disrespects the troops?” 

Chapitre 10

Article: Jesus, Matty et Felipe Alou effectuent le premier lancer à San Francisco

Baseball lundi 2003.

Article: Les 10 meilleurs frères du sport

Chapitre 11

Felipe Alou talks about baseball in the Dominican Republic. 

Felipe Alou baseball Academy. 2016. Durée: 1:31

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