b'36 2019-2020 | ANNUAL REPORT 2019-2020 | ANNUAL REPORT 37MASTERY LEVELLING UP WITH ESPORTSEven though 2,340 kilometres and teamwork, said Burns. It also helps them learnto deal with the strong emotions that can come withSeparates them, two schools went headcompetitive play.The inborn thirst for learning is cultivated; by learning to cope with theto head in an international esportsAfter spending most of her maternity leave researching esports, Melissa launched Middle Years Esports Manitoba world, the child can say, I can succeed. * tournament on January 29, 2020. (MYEMB) in October 2019. There are currently 11 schools registered in MYEMB, seven of which are in the LRSD. The Canadian competitors from Archwood School in theThe organization supports students in grades 6 to 8 with Louis Riel School Division (LRSD) took on students fromcompetitive gaming opportunities so they can experience James Monroe Middle School in Albuquerque, New Mexico.the benefits of sport, community and skill development, The two schools were both new to competitive gamingregardless of physical ability. It also gives schools the and found each other through social media.resources to launch their own esports teams. Esports catches students that may feel out of place participating Esports, also known as competitive gaming, has beenin traditional sports and validates their interests and skyrocketing in popularity over the past decade. Players,skillsets, said Burns. A lot of students go home and ranging from amateurs to paid professionals, competeplay these games in isolation, but this gives them a safe in a variety of video games as individuals or as part ofspace in our schools to create connections, feel a sense of teams. What used to be seen as a hobby is now the centrebelonging and learn about sportsmanship.of attention as global tournaments are streamed onlineand viewed by millions of people. It is also providing youth with opportunities for networking, post-secondary scholarships and career possibilities. The tournament saw five students in grades 6 to 8 atESPORTS CATCHES STUDENTS Archwood School face off in one-on-one virtual matches against their American opponents in Super Smash Bros.THAT MAY FEEL OUT OF Ultimate on the Nintendo Switch. It marked the first-ever organized esports tournament between middle yearsPLACE PARTICIPATING IN teams in Canada and the United States. In the end, James Monroe Middle School won the tournament 3-2.TRADITIONAL SPORTS AND Although esports may seem like all fun and games, Melissa Burns, a teacher at Archwood School, discovered theVALIDATES THEIR INTERESTS benefits it has on student development and decided to champion it in LRSD. Competitive gaming teachesAND SKILLSETS.students transferable skills such as troubleshooting technology, digital citizenship, critical thinking - MELISSA BURNS* Principles of the Circle of Courage: From Reclaiming Youth at Risk: Our Hope for the Future by Larry Brendtro, Martin Brokenleg, and Steve Van Bockern'