When Nazareth Area High School outside Allentown, Pennsylvania installed its new digital scoreboard last year, school administrators soon discovered that the digital technology could be used for more than fan engagement at football, soccer and lacrosse games.
Mark Madson, assistant superintendent for secondary education and support services at Nazareth Area School District, has been working with teachers to leverage the digital scoreboard in classes ranging from graphic design to entrepreneurship.
“Our goal is to make the video board as student-driven as possible,” said Madson.
Administrators at Princeton High School in Sharonville, Ohio, had the same idea. The Cincinnati area school opened its 2018 Vikings football season with a new state-of-the-art virtual scoreboard, and has plans to involve students in creating content for the board, eventually training them to program and run the display.
School districts across the country are finding that digital scoreboards can make excellent teaching tools. Some of the ways schools can leverage their investment by integrating a digital scoreboard into their curriculum include:
- Graphic design, animation and photography: Students can create images, animations and ads to enhance the game day experience.
- Journalism and visual media: Students in these classes can perform live interviews with players, coaches and fans, and create hype videos designed to get fans cheering.
- Business, marketing and advertising: Business students can create and sell advertising packages to businesses in the community, then work with local businesses to create custom ads for display on the scoreboard.
- Media technology: Technical students can learn how to program and operate the scoreboard, getting valuable control room experience.
Most high schools today already offer many of these courses as part of their curriculum, and administrators are finding that teachers are excited about including the scoreboard in their classroom projects.
Nazareth’s Madson said the school is even looking at ways to use the scoreboard for events that aren’t sports-related. The school is considering hosting a film festival to showcase student short films on the scoreboard. This type of an event, open to the whole community, would give students the opportunity to demonstrate their creativity and win prizes.