Resources › For Educators Softball Printables Teach your students more about softball with these activities Share Flipboard Email Print Karen Montejano / EyeEm/Getty Images For Educators Homeschooling Spelling Geography Becoming A Teacher Assessments & Tests Elementary Education Secondary Education Special Education Teaching By Beverly Hernandez Homeschooling Expert Beverly Hernandez is a veteran homeschooler and the former administrator of a large independent study program. our editorial process Beverly Hernandez Updated March 24, 2019 An estimated 40 million Americans play softball. Unlike baseball, in softball, the pitcher throws the ball underhand instead over overhand, and the field is about a third smaller. Games typically last only seven innings, instead of the usual nine innings in baseball. Despite its similarity to baseball, softball owes its development to another sport entirely: football. George Hancock, a reporter for the Chicago Board of Trade, came up with the idea in 1887. Hancock was gathered with some friends at the Farragut Boat Club in Chicago on Thanksgiving Day. They were watching the Yale vs. Harvard football game, which Yale won that year. The friends were a mix of Yale and Harvard alumni, and one of the Yale supporters threw a boxing glove at a Harvard alumnus in triumph. The Harvard supporter swung at the glove with a stick he happened to be held at the time. The game was on, using the glove for a ball and a broom handle for the bat. Softball quickly gained popularity and spread nationally. Help your students learn about this interesting game with these free printables. 01 of 05 Softball Word Search Beverly Hernandez Print the pdf: Softball Word Search In this first activity, students will locate 10 words commonly associated with softball. Use the activity to discover what they already know about the game and spark discussion about terms with which they're unfamiliar. 02 of 05 Softball Vocabulary Beverly Hernandez Print the pdf: Softball Vocabulary Sheet In this activity, students match each of the 10 words from the word bank with the appropriate definition. It’s a perfect way for students to learn key terms associated with softball. 03 of 05 Softball Crossword Puzzle Beverly Hernandez Print the pdf: Softball Crossword Puzzle Invite your students to learn more about softball by matching the clues with the appropriate terms in this fun crossword puzzle. Each key term has been included in a word bank to make the activity accessible for younger students. 04 of 05 Softball Challenge Beverly Hernandez Print the pdf: Softball Challenge This multiple-choice challenge will test your students' knowledge of facts related to softball. Let your children or students practice their research skills by investigating at your local library or on the internet to discover the answers to questions about which they're unsure. 05 of 05 Softball Alphabet Activity Beverly Hernandez Print the pdf: Softball Alphabet Activity Elementary-age students can practice their alphabetizing skills with this activity. They'll place the words associated with softball in alphabetical order.