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Resources: Football and science - do they mix?

With 50,000 users, Footee is a highly popular free online education resource that builds on football’s appeal to young people 6-12 and their love of games, competition and social networking to make learning effective and fun. European Schoolnet is working to make the resources relevant to learners across Europe and among the many games are 14 that develop scientific understanding. Do topics like Forces and motion, materials and their properties and physical processes sound dull? Maybe not Beach Dodger, Floodlight Failure and Hit the Target though, but children can learn about science while playing these games.

With more than 300 games to choose from, including online sessions against friends and safe online chat facilities, Footee users have many opportunities. They can design their own avatars, explore the Footee Town – with its café, stadium, gym and marketplace – or earn points to ‘buy’ players for their teams by playing games (and thereby acquiring and consolidating curriculum-related skills and knowledge in a playful way). There’s even the opportunity to collect and swap virtual stickers of their favourite players. Click “What’s it all about” at Footee for a quick tutorial on Footee 2010.

Every time children use Footee, they’re completing wide-ranging curriculum-based activities. Clicking on the Parent/Teacher tab at the top of the page reveals a drop down menu with Lesson Plans and Activities and articles on ‘Footee 2010 in the Classroom’, ‘How Footee Links to the Curriculum’ and ‘Online Safety’. Activities are linked to the curriculum and are intended to help learning mathematics, language, science, sport, geography and history as well as developing cross-curricular subjects and competences like citizenship, health, technology, problem-solving, learning to learn, teamwork, and digital literacy.