Tuesday, January 12, 2016

League of Legends game club

Due to the perseverance of two students, our school recently has started a League of Legends game club.  The plan is to have students create teams up to 5 and play after school on various days.  When I held the first meeting, over 120 students, out of 1600, came to sign up.

This caused a problem as I struggled on how to organize such a large group of students!!

However, I then realized a game club had something unique that most other school teams/clubs struggle with:
  • I don't have cut anyone, as I am not governed by number of uniforms, playing time, and the constraints of the physical world.
  • All skill levels are welcome; beginners can play against beginners, and experts against experts.
  • Students literally can play from anywhere in the world, and ultimately play against any other high school in the world.
As I chaired the first meeting, which started after the cheering and high-fives stopped, I heard one student say "Finally a place where us misfits can go!".  Immediately it hit me!  Most schools foster academics with honour rolls and awards, they encourage athletics with sports teams and ribbons, and they strengthen the fine arts with band and theatre productions, but what about the "techies"?

Now,  I understand that most (hopefully ALL) schools try to allow each student some connection to their community, but at this time I had realized that at least one student had yet to have a connection with ours.  The discussions that began after my introduction were mind blowing.  Students asking "Can we have T-shirts?", "Can we make an official tournament?", "Can we play in the gathering area on the big screen for all to watch?" and of course "Can I play during class time?" (which was a quick No!)

Some students in the crowd showed such excitement and enthusiasm it was near impossible to calm them down.  We may have just hooked more students into knowing that "School is actually pretty cool!"

How did this begin?

Two years ago, I was introduced to the game League of Legends by a student.  As a gamer myself I immediately got hooked!  It is free to play, spending money won't make you have an edge, and utilizes team play.  During the summer, as I was playing, a student asked me if we could start a club.  I thought it would be an amazing idea!

During a weekend, two students and myself came to the school and developed a Prezi around "The benefits of gaming".   The prezi was then presented to our Superintendent, and Associate Superintendent of learning, and we were approved a day as a "trial".  I selected the lucky (and trust me they felt extremely lucky) 20 students to play the game while the Superintendent spectated.

The trial was a success!!

The game club has been approved, and now we are organizing our school's first League of Legends tournament with prizes to be school wear branded with logos of the game, and other technology.

I am glad that my student pushed me to start this club as I have already seen the positive impacts it can have on the culture of a school.  For information on the amazing benefits of "gaming"  I encourage  you to read the following:


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