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A Blog Ambassador Baseball Experiment

Throughout the year we'll hear from eight bloggers as they share about their family's time in the Riley Children’s Health Sports Legends Experience® and how it inspires them to explore these sports back at home. 

This post was written by Children's Museum Blog Ambassador Kate Amos. Follow her posts on the blog or follow her at @indywithkids on Instagram and Facebook and Twitter.  

We aren’t the sportiest family around. While the husband and I enjoy the occasional trip to Lucas Oil to cheer on the Colts and are good Bulldogs when basketball season is going well, our children have been known to incorrectly identify sports. We continuously have to explain that the sport is just “soccer” not “soccer ball”—don’t hold it against me. 

I, myself, have always loved sports. Playing them and watching them (but only in person) so I thought maybe some exposure from multiple angles might help get my kiddos interested in baseball—playing, watching, and reading. Their first real experience with baseball was trying out one of the programs on Wiese Field in the sports experience during our first visit. We all got to practice fielding balls, and then the kids got to take a couple of turns at bat. Pretty cool stuff, I thought (and two out of three children agreed...that’s about as good as it gets in my world). 

The Observation: I had observed my children enjoying this new sport, but also appearing a bit clueless. So I wondered—would they enjoy learning about the sport by reading about it and watching others play it? Would playing the sport be more enjoyable if they knew more about it? 

The Hypothesis: As with most activities, I find it more fun to do than to watch, and so do my kiddos. I went into this exploration assuming that sports would follow this pattern. 

The Experiment: After playing baseball in the sports experience, we needed more exposure to the game to get a clear read on the Amos Babies’ level of baseball love. We went to the library to read about it, and also checked out a real-live Indianapolis Indians game to watch it being played at Victory Field. The reading was a bit dull, and too detailed for these baseball novices. Next time a fictional picture book might be a better choice. 

The Data: We used a super-casual data collection method for this experiment which we refer to as “Thumbs Up or Thumbs Down.”
The scoring went like this: 

Reading about Baseball - 1 thumb up, 2 thumbs down

Watching Baseball - 2.5 thumbs up, 0.5 thumb down (one kid couldn’t decide… on one hand watching baseball seemed a bit dull, on the other hand there were Dippin’ Dots…)

Playing Baseball - 2 thumbs up, 1 thumb down (But all three would like to sign up to play on a baseball can see how the lines become blurred here.)

The Conclusion: According to our extremely scientific rating scale (reading - 1 pt, watching - 2.5 points, playing - 2 pts) our family prefers watching baseball to playing by a hair, and prefers playing over reading about baseball. It will take more tough research to determine if this conclusion stands for other sports as well. Next stop, the Indianapolis Colt’s Football Experience and then Lucas Oil for a real game! 

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