Thursday, November 5, 2015

'Madden NFL' makes a play for the classroom - USA Today

Last week I had a chance to catch a glimpse of this fabulous new partnership in the works. Talk about a way to "hook" the reluctant learner. EA Sports, the NFL Players Association, and Discovery Education are teaming up on an educational partnership that brings the math and science of the gridiron into the lives of kids, fans, and gamers.

Below is an exert and link to Brett Molina's article in USA Today about the new program.
Math and science students may soon huddle up with a name familiar to many video game fans: Madden NFL.

Electronic Arts announced Wednesday it is teaming up with the NFL Players Association and Discovery Education on a program called EA Sports Madden NFL: Football By The Numbers, aimed at teaching math and science to students between fifth and ninth grades.

The program will kick off on December 1. It's free to any math and science teacher seeking to incorporate Madden into their curriculum.

"We’ve always strived for Madden NFL to be a teaching tool for the sport of football, and now we’re marrying the art of the video game to the science behind our young fans’ favorite sport, teaching them both the fundamentals of the sport and the math that fuels it," says Anthony Stevenson, vice president of marketing at EA Sports.

The plan features several interactive scenarios based around exploring, learning and game play. The program combines football concepts with math and science principles including physics and probability. For example, one lesson involves throwing the football, broken down by the velocity and angle required to complete each pass. In another lesson, players pretend to be a defensive coordinator, using probability to choose the right play and stop an opponent.

"What's really fun about it is whether a student loves football and knows the game, or has never played football before, it's so easy for them to come in to the interactive, to understand the core concepts that drive decisions that are made during the football game, and be able to apply those critical thinking skills," says Lori McFarling of Discovery Education.

Read more: 'Madden NFL' makes a play for the classroom

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