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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Using the Super Bowl for the classroom?

Using the Super Bowl for the classroom?

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I'm not really a Superbowl person, but I just came across this article about how some New Orleans schools are using the Superbowl in the classroom in a variety of creative ways. "At Woodlake Elementary in Mandeville, third-grade mathematics students are learning how far $4,000 might go for those attending the big game. In Slidell at Abney Elementary, students have been writing their own lyrics to a Saints mambo. Students at Creekside Junior High in Pearl River wrote verbs relating to the Super Bowl onto a large king cake and planned to write poetic couplets about the game." More here - the tactics are about halfway down. http://www.nola.com/superbowl/index.ssf/2010/02/schools_adapt_lessons_to... A couple of other ideas I've heard from other teachers * An opportunity to talk about the values of staying in shape. Fit for Life: A Coach's Pep Talk http://www.edutopia.org/coachs-pep-talk Former San Francisco 49ers coach Bill Walsh discusses the importance of physical fitness in school and beyond. * For older kids, a discussion of teamwork, and how the various positions in football need to work together to achieve goals. * Another one for older kids, a media literacy discussion which deconstructs how ads work to attempt to manipulate them. Who is the target audience? What is the subtext? Anyone else have any ideas?

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Elana Leoni's picture
Elana Leoni
Director of Social Media Strategy and Marketing @Edutopia, edcamp organizer
Staff

I'm definitely a SuperBowl person. Every year it comes around, I have to say, I can't wait to meet up with friends and family to celebrate (I've even quit a job before when I was 16 because they wanted me to work on SuperBowl! :)

I'm predicting or hoping the Saints win. As many people are saying, it's truly "the feel good" story. Everyone can remember the tragic images of victims of Hurricane Katrina at the Superdome. I think a Saints win would provide more hope to Lousiana and to us all. If a state can overcome such a tragedy like Katrina, it may just give us all the hope we need to combat our current battles.

Just my $.02. Let me know who you'd like to win and why. I'm looking for some good debate here!

PS: There's a good article on Care2, "The Super Bowl: An Educational Tale (Sort of)" that speaks to the Saints being a "feel good story."

Elana Leoni's picture
Elana Leoni
Director of Social Media Strategy and Marketing @Edutopia, edcamp organizer
Staff

And I thought I'd enter my predictions for this year's winner. My hope is that the packers win :) Big fan of Aaron Rogers (it's a bittersweet relationship since I'm a Niners fan and we could have had him!) and what he does for the game.

How are you getting your students involved in the lead-up to the big game?

Last year, I heard of many teachers having assignments around the SuperBowl commercials -- very interesting!

Scott Krier's picture

In the past, I taught a middle school elective on statistics. What we did was used for a data base were the results of the previous 17 weeks of football games. We plotted data such as the yardage differential, turnover differential, time of possession differential versus win/loss. As early as 1996, we concluded that only turnover differential (a plus for a turnover in one's favor, a minus for a turnover given up) is an adequate predictor of the team likely to win the Superbowl. Interestingly, the commentators now regularly talk about this as a predictive tool. But, at the time, it was only speculation. Our data basis, of course, was limited to one season, but it very strongly correlated, much more so than the other factors. Besides, the kids got into this.

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