We are nearing the finale of this year's March Madness tournament. Which NCAA teams must have the best basketball programs since they consistently do well in this tournament?
Based on this data, which do you think is the greatest March Madness program ever?
Once students decide their “best program ever,” challenge them use a different criteria than they originally used. That is, ask them to think of another way to determine the best program ever. There are lots of ways to think about this. No one way is the only way or the correct way. The point is to get students reasoning and communicating mathematically.
Check out the activity below:
For members we have an editable Word docx, an Excel sheet of our calculations, and solutions.
CCSS: 6.RP.1, 6.RP.3, 6.SP.5, 7.RP.3, MP2, MP3
We have two more March Madness activities:
The perfect Bracket - What are your chances of picking every game? How does the change from 64 to 65 to now, 68 teams in the field complicate things? How many brackets would you need to fill out to pick every possibility? How many reams of paper would you need to print all of those brackets? Do the math!
Does seeding really matter? - Engage your students in percents as they get excited about March Madness. Is getting a higher seed really an advantage? Use 30 years of data to help determine for which seeds it makes sense to pick an upset. Finally, students determine a general strategy for picking games in the first round.