Dayton Regional STEM Center
(937) 225-4598
200 S. Keowee St. Dayton, OH 45402

Madness in March

March Madness is an exciting time of year when the best college basketball teams square off for a final tournament. Many students are enthralled by the games and become energized by basketball.  This lesson begins by having student view a short video clip, “One Shining Moment” from the men’s NCAA basketball tournament. Students will then research information about basketballs through exploring the internet and conducting experiments.  Students will also learn about energy conservation as they use energy equations to solve problems.

This lesson connects to the state standards and coincides with the madness of the game.  Basketballs are made from a variety of materials and multiple sizes depending upon the gender, players and league.  In the game of basketball, the referee checks the bounce of a basketball prior to the start of the game.  The questions presented to the students in this inquiry based lesson include: How does temperature and pressure affect the bounce of the ball; and does the composition of the ball and floor affect the bounce of the ball?

Physical Science Grade 9 Benchmark D:  Explain the movement of objects by applying Newton’s three laws of motion.
Grade 9 Benchmark F:  Explain how energy may change form or be redistributed but the total quantity of energy is conserved.
Grade 12 Benchmark D:  Apply principles of forces and motion to mathematically analyze, describe and predict the net effects on objects or systems.
Scientific Inquiry Grade 9 Benchmark A:  Participate in and apply the processes of scientific investigation to create models and to design, conduct, evaluate and communicate the results of these investigations.
Grade 11-12 Benchmark A:   Make appropriate choices when designing and participating in scientific investigations by using cognitive and manipulative skills when collecting data and formulating conclusions from the data.
Measurement Grade 9 Benchmark D: Use proportional reasoning and apply indirect measurement techniques, including right triangle trigonometry and properties of similar triangles, to solve problems involving measurements and rates.
Grade 12 Benchmark D: Solve problem situations involving derived measurements; e.g., density, acceleration.
Patterns, Functions and Algebra Grade 9 Benchmark B: Identify and classify functions as linear or nonlinear, and contrast their properties using tables, graphs or equations
Grade 9 Benchmark I: Model and solve problem situations involving direct and inverse variation.
Grade 10 Benchmark D: Use algebraic representations such as tables, graphs, expressions & inequalities to model and solve problem situations.
Grade 12 Benchmark A: Analyze functions by investigating rates of change, intercepts, zeros, asymptotes, and local and global behavior.
Data Analysis and Probability Grade 9 -10 Benchmark A: Create, interpret, and use graphical displays and statistical measures to describe data.
Grade 11 Benchmark A: Create and analyze tabular and graphical displays of data using appropriate tools, including spreadsheets and graphing calculators.
Grade 11 Benchmark C: Design and perform a statistical experiment, simulation or study; collect and interpret data; and use descriptive statistics to communicate and support predictions and conclusions.
Technology for Productivity Applications Grade 11 Benchmark A: Integrate conceptual knowledge of technology systems in determining practical applications for learning and technical problem-solving.
Technology and Information Literacy Grade 9 Benchmark B: Apply a research process model to conduct research and meet information needs.
Grade 10 Benchmark A: Determine and apply an evaluative process to all information sources chosen for a project.
Grade 12 Benchmark D: Evaluate choices of electronic resources and determine their strengths and limitations.
Design Grade 10 Benchmark C: Understand and apply research, development and experimentation to problem-solving.
Desgned World Grade 11 Benchmark C: Classify, demonstrate, examine and appraise manufacturing technologies.