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March Madness STEM Resources

basketball madness crop

You don’t have to be a college hoops fanatic to get swept up in March Madness. Just as athletes “learn from the game,” the annual NCAA competition offers students a timely, engaging way to hone their STEM knowledge and skillsCheck out this eGFI collection of bracket-busting resources, including BracketOdds, the University of Illinois computer science STEM learning laboratory!

Just for fun: March Madness 2017 viral video from UNC-Charlotte statistics class. Or learn how to improve your odds of picking the winning teams in the annual NCAA basketball tournament from University of Michigan aerospace engineering professors:

Activities and Features from eGFI

eGFI Teachers’ Newsletters

Other Resources

How engineers play basketball: watch until end for surprise ending:

Basketball Lesson Links for the STEM Classroom. This Siemens STEM Academy blog post has links to a dozen online activities and features, from basketball physics to bracket science to eGFI’s Big Dance Basics.

Basketball on Earth vs. Moon. Interactive infographic details the different gravitational forces and how that affects a jump shot.

Basketball STEM Project. Quick takes on topics from the engineering of the ball (dimpled surface improves grip) to the math of free-throw averages.

Circumference of a Changing Basketball & 5 Other Math Activities. NCAA Basketball has assembled six standards-based hands-on middle school math activities. [Grades 6-8]

Can Data Analytics Help You Fill Out Your March Madness Bracket? 2017 interview with University of Illinois computer scientist Sheldon Jacobson, who also oversees the BracketOdds STEM learning laboratory and interactive bracket chooser.

Engineer a Sneaker. NGSS-aligned design activity from the University of Colorado, Boulder’s TeachEngineering online lesson-plan library. [Grades 6-8]

Exploring Binary: Elements of Binary in the NCAA Basketball Tournament. Ph.D. computer scientist/blogger Rick Regan looks at brackets in terms of binary throw

March Fun: Basketball Lesson Plans. Education World’s list ranges from and elementary-level poetry writing challenge to using high-school math to figure the winner. Includes a You’ve Got Game! game-design challenge for all grade levels.

March Madness: The Science of Shooting A short primer on spin and Air Jordan jump shots from the American Physical Society and North Carolina State University, with Ivanhoe news video.

NCAA Basketball Lesson Plan Resources and Links (part 1). Bracket science, who’s #1, and the history of basketball are among the 15 links listed in this blog post from 21st Century Educational Technology and Learning.

NCAA Basketball Lesson Plan Resources and Links (part 2). 15 more problem-based learning links from 21st Century Educational Technology and Learning.

STEM in Sports. This collection of video Time-Warner Cable’s Connect a Million Minds includes a trash-basket toss game that reinforces such math concepts as vectors and parabolas.

Thirty NCAA Basketball Lesson Links: Best Classroom Lessons Never Taught. Indiana’s former STEM educator of the year suggests hands-on ways to incorporate students’ excitement about basketball brackets in math, geography, and other lessons, such as performing a cost-benefit analysis by determining whether LeBron James should mow his own lawn.

Trashketball. This video-rich lesson in collecting and charting data from Modeling Middle School Mathematics rotates students to different stations where they can score one, two, or three points by tossing wadded up paper balls into the waste basket.

Updated March 2018

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