Here is a fun basketball activity that helps students understand liquid measurements and geometric shapes.
Submitted by Kay Parrott from Newark, Ohio. 4-6
Background: Here is a fun basketball integration activity that we used to help the students understand liquid measurement (i.e., what is a cup and what are the number of cups in a pint, quart, gallon?) and geometric shapes (rectangle, rhombus, trapezoid, octagon, etc.).
- Laminated teacher-made geometric shapes
- Clipboards with record sheets, pencils
- Measurement “tickets”
Set-Up: The class is divided into 5-6 teams and line up as shown in the diagram on the following page. The geometric shapes are placed on the floor. Each team is provided a clipboard with a conversion sheet, pencil, and a basketball. The conversion sheet also has the game “key” that shows what geometric shape corresponds with the liquid measure.
How We Play It: Before playing, the teacher will go over the conversion sheet and game key with the students. On the teacher’s command, the first players in line dribble the basketball to any of the geometric shapes and take a shot. If successful, the teacher will give the student a “ticket” with the corresponding liquid measure. For example:
The student takes the ticket back to his group, give the basketball to the next player in line, and records the measurement on the team’s sheet. This continues until time is up (6-8 minutes or so). The number of cups (points) are added together for a team score.
Teacher Tips: Here are a few modifications and/or suggestions -
(1) Use cups filled with water to demonstrate how many cups in a pint, pints in a quart, and quarts in a gallon.
(2) Talk about the definition of the geometric shapes (i.e., a trapezoid is a four-sided geometric figure having two parallel sides, a rhombus has four equal sides).
(3) The students will also quickly learn that some of the geometric shapes (i.e., triangle, pentagon) do not earn any points.