March Madness Teaching Fun

Blog March STEM Madness

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Q: What did the march say to all the madness?

A: What’s all that bracket? Ba-dum-bum-CHING 😀

March brings on the college basketball playoff madness. This grandma even filled out a bracket for the first time (which is doing horrible because I have a soft heart and went with most of the underdogs 😮 ).

A friend was telling me that all her family members fill out a bracket and she keeps track of the points earned. At the end of the March Madness, she buys a small gift for the winner. A gift such as a Subway Gift Certificate. She also shared that since she is the keeper of the brackets, she adds a little trash texting when she can. 🙂 Thank you, Judy, for the family fun idea. I have nothing to trash, which is making me down in the dumps.

My family decided to steal this idea and most members filled out their hopeful winning brackets. After Round 2 the grandchildren are in first place (Grandpa filled out a ‘chalk’ bracket for them), the daughter is in second, Grandpa is in third place, the son is in fourth, and I am dead last and fading fast.

I’ve learned a little math because of all this bracket business. I had no idea how to keep the points. The math hubby shared the Fibonacci Sequence and summed it up for me. Wow, who knew? Evidently, not me. If you aren’t sure what that is, click here to check it out, and consider it part of your new knowledge gleaned today. Math is fun.

My daughter shared that one year her bracket did terrible.  When I asked her why, her answer made me chuckle: “because I picked the teams based on their mascots. Whichever mascot would win in a fight against the other, then that was the team I picked. It was bad” (as she expected it to be). 😀  Well, fear not. There’s a classroom activity for that (click on the picture for more details)…March Mascot Madness.

Blog march mascot madness

Like the example above, teachers have an enjoyable time with March Madness. If you walk the hallways of schools you will likely see bulletin boards that have competitions going on for many subjects—picture book competitions, song competitions, physical education competitions, and even Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) competitions. You will see classrooms everywhere that are celebrating the basketball frenzy with their specific educational twists.

Even principals do innovative activities with this March Madness craze. Dr. Brad Gustafson, elementary principal in Wayzata, Minnesota, used the March Madness theme for his podcast last year. Check out one of his ‘edu-awesome’ March Madness podcasts below:

While perusing Pinterest, several fun March Teaching Madness ideas bounced out. Below are just a few of these activities. Click on all the pictures for the links to take you to a more detailed explanation of the idea.

March Door-Decorating Madness will create an inviting, welcoming atmosphere. Decorated doors help instill excitement into the learning.

Blog March Madness Door

March Reading Madness book tournaments are wonderful for any age. Use picture books for younger students or use classics for older students. A genre tournament would also be great in a Language Arts class or a Children’s Literature class. A tournament of books can be implemented in any classroom.

Blog March Reading Madness Championship

March Library Madness is another way to have a book tournament. Librarians like to add a little thrill when the students come visit the library, and kudos to these folks for scoring big with library time.

Blog March Library Madness

Mapping skills would be a great March Social Studies Madness activity. Many of the university locations are unknown to me so I’ve had to look them up. I discovered that Butler is in Indiana, and that Gonzaga is in Washington. In addition to math, I’ve learned a little social studies.

Blog March Social Studies Madness

March Science Madness could be something simple like an experiment that demonstrates potential energy (stored) and kinetic energy (moving) with discussion on momentum, speed, and mass. Energizing…

Blog March Science Madness

March STEM Madness brings on many activity choices. Science experiments, fractions in math, or engineering innovation, this link will fill the March STEM Madness gaps.

Blog march madness stem shoot

How do engineers play basketball? Check out the video below to find out. 😀

March Physical Education Madness will challenge the stamina of students and staff. I’ll be giving these exercises a try during the 3rd round. I hope it will work out.

Blog March PE Madness1

March Music Madness can include songs that are familiar to the students and they vote on their favorites. Or, if there is a genre that is being taught, have those songs on the bracket. Please note that the possibilities are endless.

Blog March Music Madness Spanish class

My bracket has Villanova winning the whole tournament. They lost on Saturday which busted my bracket to smithereens! 😮 If it weren’t for those Fibonacci points…I’d have no points at all. And that, dear friends, would be pointless.

Blog March Madness Loss

If you have any ‘edu-awesome’ March Madness ideas that you have used in your classroom or have seen in a school, PLEASE share in the comments so our teacher candidates can beg, borrow, and steal (tweak). 🙂 Bracketology…give it a shot (pardon all the puns 😀 ).

Stay Calm & March On!
Profs Dr. Wendy & Dr. V.

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