SHS Weekly News December 3, 2018
E-Sports Team at Scituate High
It’s one minute before gametime. Electrifying music bumps from speakers. Positions are set. The clock is ticking down, and Scituate High School students are ready for battle - an esports battle.
This year marks the first that SHS is competing in the Rhode Island electronic gaming season through PlayVS, a company that collaborated with the National Federation of High Schools to bring electronic sports competitions to schools across the nation. Gamers unite to form squads of five, and the camaraderie and strategy needed to succeed is no different than on athletic fields - but one difference is the game itself and where the teams compete.
At SHS, the Scituate High School LOL (League of Legends) team, composed of 20 students, practices the computer-based video game several times a week in the Scituate Innovation Lab, and competes weekly against a collective of 26 high school teams across Rhode Island to battle online in a League of Legends game face-off. The computer lab and maker space was designed for SHS’ Career and Technical Education (CTE) pathways, one of which is computer science.
Principal Michael Hassell said, “We are one of the first schools in the state of Rhode island to participate in this new and innovative opportunity.”
Nick Bousquet, computer science, engineering and mathematics instructor at Scituate High, said, “There is an incredibly demanding level of teamwork involved in esports.”
Each “role” in the game, he explained, is critical to the overall success of each team playing League of Legends. If one player isn’t where they need to be, a whole team may face defeat.
Students on the esports team, Bousquet said, are forced to learn to, “communicate in the heat of the moment under stress in a technical environment, and to do it well.”
These particular “soft skills” including communication and strategizing together are imperative for students to combine with their affinity for technicality, he said.
The teammates learn how to identify their own strengths and weaknesses, and play roles accordingly to win matches, Bousquet said. Gone are the days of single-player video games - this era of gaming is about a collective coming together. It’s also about finding and using resources well, Bousquet said.
In the League of Legends game, Bousquet said students are, “trying to manage certain magical resources which are fun and hypothetical, but could easily translate to any number of resources that you or I manage in our professional careers.”
Bousquet said, “The first day we had practice, I was just blown away with the amount of energy.”
Since then, he said, “The level of play, and the level of teamwork has really increased.”
Player progression is evolving within the SHS team, Bousquet said. Some students have never played the game before and are sharpening their skills, while others are learning to specialize within roles or branch out to new positions.
Beyond the team building and fun aspects of the esports team, Bousquet said students are also able to take this interest and bridge it to computer science and futures in technology - like software or game engineering.
Esports teams and competitions have been rolled out in about 45 states, Bousquet said, including nearby Massachusetts and Connecticut. While the SHS team is just a few weeks in to the competition season, they continue to improve, he said.
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SPECIAL EDUCATION LOCAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE
Wednesday, December 5, 2018
6:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Northwest Special Education Region
23A Theodore Foster Drive
No. Scituate, RI 02857
IF YOU PLAN TO ATTEND CALL 647-4106
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The Scituate School Department does not discriminate on the basis of age, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, race, religion, national origin, color, creed, political affiliation or disability in any of its educational programs and activities, and in employment and application for employment, as required by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Title VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1965, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, and other federal and state laws that prohibit discrimination. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the non-discrimination policies: Equal Employment Officer, P.O. Box 188, North Scituate, Rhode Island 02857, Telephone: (401) 647-4100; Email: EEO@ScituateSchoolsRI.net. You may also direct inquiries directly to: Office for Civil Rights (Boston Office), U.S. Department of Education, 8th Floor, 5 Post Office Square, Boston, MA 02109-3921, Telephone: (617) 289-0111; Facsimile: (617) 289-0150; Email: OCR.Boston@ed.gov. If you require an accommodation to attend a meeting or program at a school, call the Equal Employment Officer at least two business days in advance of the meeting or program.