Fantasy Footy in the Classroom

What I’ve Been Reading:

This Week’s Question:

  • Write a blog post reflecting on your understanding of reverse instruction, game-based learning, or play and how how it applies to your curricular area, grade level, and own theory on technology in the classroom.

When I first thought of the idea, it made me have a little chuckle. Fantasy football in the classroom? You’ve got to be dreaming, Jamie. Indeed, I thought the idea was that chuckle-worthy that I slipped it into a few of the conversations I’ve had of recent with fellow COETAILers and teachers from my school.

But, in all seriousness, is there a place for fantasy football (or fantasy footy as we Australians like to call it) in the classroom? In particular, the math classroom?

Red Football - The 365 Toy Project

Let’s take a look at some of the knowledge/skills that one reenforces by being a member of the fantasy football community. (This is by no means an exhaustive list.)

Interpreting Statistics
I wouldn’t say statistics are at the centre of fantasy football, because the real game is. Statistics are that layer that wraps around the centre. That doesn’t sound right. What I’m trying to say is, statistics are central to fantasy football. They are what drive it. To master fantasy football, you need to first master the statistics. Point averages, point projections, break evens, estimated price fluctuations, trades remaining, cash in bank, you name it.

Weighing Up Options
Understanding what these statistics mean is the easy part. Things get tough when one of your players gets sidelined for six weeks with an injury forcing you to trade him out and bring in someone new. Do you upgrade? That is, do you use some of the cash you have safely stored away to upgrade to an even better player? Or do you downgrade to a lesser player and in the process generate a little bit of cash?

Was that the right move or wasn’t it? Should have I used two trades or just one? (You’re only given 24 trades to burn over the 19 week competition.) Should have I gone with that player or not? Should have I upgraded or downgraded? These and many more are the questions each fantasy football coach asks themselves in the days succeeding a weekend of footy.

So, fantasy football in the classroom. What do you think?

Image Credits:

4 thoughts on “Fantasy Footy in the Classroom

  1. Jamie,

    Glad to see our post-COETAIL “brainstorming sessions” have yielded someone a blogpost!

    Good on you for taking action and having the outage to try something new. I shall early wait details of the outcome in greater detail. Well laid out explanation, citations and links to further reading. I may well remix some of your ergonomic layout ideas myself.


  2. Whoah, ought to spellcheck before submitting. Sorry, quick to click at the stain wile I still have a connection! Could you decipher?

    Outage= courage

  3. Hey Jamie,

    I’m with you! I think sport almost across the board generates so much in the way of statistical data that it can be effective as a construct for authentically teaching math concepts. I think the same could probably be said for lots of other fields too, electoral politics, movies at the box office, I don’t know… tons I guess. I suppose the challenge might be the same as with any other construct for teaching a math concept. It would work if it were authentic. If you had students who were super keen on fantasy footy and there was an authentic transition to working with it, playing with it in the class, I’d say go for it! But I think I’d be just as hesitant to bring it in without observed student interest as any other sort of content.

    The only thing I’ve done similarly, with sport stats, happened two years ago when someone was asking about the idea of home and away teams. We spent a little time looking at statistics of games won and lost, across sports, for teams when at home or away. Students quickly noted the patterns of success at home. This led to a discussion of our classroom as our home, and that because we could learn to support each other we could generate more success “at home”. Similarly, we reasoned that if someone was undermining our success in some way, they should be reminded that they weren’t supporting the team. Throughout the following year, every now and then when someone was going off the rails, another student would turn to them and say “home team”. They liked saying it, which was one reason for it’s having continued, but I think the discussion that came out of the statistics stuck with them too…

    Thanks for the post!

  4. You should totally do this as a project! What a great idea! Can you teach statistics at the right time of year? I’m also wondering how you can use technology to support either the collection or the analysis of the data for the project too.

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