A final score reported for a sporting event may not say much about the game itself. Pose the following question to students:
If a final score in football is 20-14, how were the points scored?
This question is not intended to focus on the plays used to score
but rather on the different ways that a total of 20 points (or 14
points) might be earned.
Other questions to ask the students include:
- Is it possible that the team scoring 20 points scored four touchdowns?
- Might they have scored two touchdowns?
- If so, how could their other points have been earned?
Distribute a copy of the Super Bowl Scores Activity Sheet to each student.
Discuss with the class the fact that for a football team to have
a certain number of points, only certain combinations of scores can be
made. For example, for a teach to have 5 points, they would have to
have made one field goal and one safety.
Some students may need to be told the meaning of a safety and have a brief review of the way football is scored.
Encourage the students to explore and develop as many possibilities
as they can generate. The "bar-numberline" approach suggested on the
activity sheet can be use to help them explore possibilities.
You might consider using other manipulatives to represent points.