Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The World Cup In The Classroom - Visualizations Of FIFA 2014 As Teaching Tools

Source: FIFA
The 2014 FIFA World Cup begins tomorrow with the host nation (and tournament favorite) Brazil taking on Croatia in Group A. Even as the home country fights off negative press and clambers to complete its infrastructure, the quadrennial contest is shaping up to be the most watched sporting event in history. While soccer has long remained the most popular global sport, even the United States is now getting amped up about the potential of this year's gritty squad.

In the classroom, potential abounds for incorporating this worldwide phenomenon into a host of different lessons, including geography, math, culture, science, foreign languages, physiology, and economics. Animations, motion graphics, and visualizations are keen avenues to catch students' attentions and lure them into learning.



For non-soccer fanatics, a brief introduction to the World Cup can be found in two snappy ESPN FC and Vox articles. An even better primer is the explainer video above from Square Pixel Studios. This clean animation offers a comprehensive overview of the tournament geography and the marquee cultural figures.

Another top-tier classroom resource is the interactive infographic below, "FIFA World Cup Brazil - Then And Now." As students scroll through the chromatic design, facts and figures swoop onto the screen, emphasizing the different phases of tournament history and highlighting both the economics and mathematics of the competition.

Source: Chapman-Freeborn (click for full graphic)
One of the best and most creative motion graphics comes from James Richardson and Damn Fine Media. The video below, "USA: A World Cup History," arranges mock paper cutouts on a white canvas to tell the story of soccer, as well as America's (few) successes and (many) failures. The Guardian features a full gallery of similar films tracing the "Animated Histories" of other World Cup stalwarts.


Finally, a terrific animation from Wyzowl helps explain one of the trickiest and most controversial of soccer statues -- the offsides rule. The video, "2014 FIFA World Cup - The Offside Rule Explained," furnishes an eye-catching way to keep kids occupied during a rainy recess when they can't actually go outside and boot the ball themselves.



For other ideas about incorporating the tournament into the classroom, we recommend The Guardian's article on "How To Teach ... The World Cup 2014." For similar resources on teaching with sports visualizations, check out:

5 comments:

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    Jose Manuel
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