Monday, August 04, 2014

360 Degree Questioning

Next week we open Lights Academy for the first time at Lutheran High School, a project-based and personalized learning environment for select students (more about Lights Academy coming in a blog post within the next week). One of the goals of Lights Academy is to help our students see the world from a 360 degree perspective -- to see the intersection of so many different areas of life at one time and place.

As my regular readers know, I am an avid baseball fan. About a month ago I set out for Coors Field, home of the Colorado Rockies, the local major league baseball team. My goal for the day was much different than simply sitting back and enjoying a ballgame. To model this 360 degree thinking for my students, I wrote seven pages worth of questions about how a single ballgame intersects with so many areas of life. Here is a small sample of these questions:
  • Does the power of a radio station matter for a team?
  • How are radio network affiliates identified and signed?
  • What is the financial relationship between the team and affiliate radio stations?
  • How much do stations pay for the rights to broadcast Rockies games?
  • To what extent are neighboring businesses dependent on the team for success?
  • What happens to their success if the team is winning? Losing?
  • How do neighboring businesses survive the off-season?
  • What percentage of total business for a neighboring business is directly related to the team?
  • Who washes uniforms?
  • How much do uniforms cost?
  • How many uniforms are available for each player?
  • Who assigns uniform numbers?
  • Can players request specific uniform numbers?
  • Who is in charge of the equipment?
  • How much and what types of equipment is needed?
  • What equipment is needed for road trips?
  • What technology is used to support the team?
  • What kind of video system is used to help players prepare for games?
 (NOTE: The entire list of questions may be found in a file at the bottom of this page)

What questions would you add to this list? What are the intersections you see in these questions with different academic disciplines and interest students might have? How can this type of questioning lead to further inquiry and excitement for learning? How can questions like this be used to personalize the learning experience for students?

We will be looking even more closely at this 360 degree perspective in future blog posts.

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