The 4Cs+1C and Esports
Communication, Collaboration, Creativity and Critical Thinking.
The 4Cs as these are known are modern skills we wish every student to master. Yet, most schools and classrooms do a very poor job of imparting these skills. Usually imparting these skills falls to a special one-time activity that allows the teacher to check off their box on their list of to-dos for this school year. It is artificial and does little to get the students using any of these skills.
Enter esports (aka competitive video games) and specifically the game League of Legends. If you have not taken the time to examine this game, it requires two teams of five students to actively plan strategy similar to chess in real time and an ever changing environment while working together to capture their opponents home base. Watching the game in real-time and you start to see the 4Cs are alive and well and very necessary for students to master in order to be successful. And with 67 million League of Legends players (a number larger than the population of France), chances are many of your high school aged students have played the game before.
The barriers to fielding a team are access to computers that meet the minimum game requirements (the game is free to download and play), a team/club sponsor, and a reliable network connection. Take a moment to watch this video about a high school club in Des Moines, IA and you will see that eeports is more than a club. I would argue esports adds an additional C towards which we should strive – Community.