PLAY BALL
by Rick Pearce

SUBJECT:
7th Grade Math

TOPIC:
Ratio & Proportion; Conversion between Fractions & Decimals


Rick Pearce
To obtain a downloadable copy of the worksheet that accompanies this bulletin board, click on the button below.

TITLE: Play Ball

SUBJECT: 7th grade general mathematics

TOPIC: Ratio and proportion; conversion between fractions and decimals.

INTERACTIVITY: Students will select “Baseball Cards” randomly from the box attached to the board. Each card has a word problem related to a baseball statistic (batting average, slugging percentage, earned run average, strikeouts per nine innings and winning percentage). On the worksheet (attached), students will note the number of each card selected and the game situation (score, outs, and any base runners) and will solve the problem completely. After completing the problem, the student will compare his/her answer with that on the back of the card. A correct answer is a base hit (mostly singles; there are five doubles and two home runs in the deck), while an incorrect answer is an out. The normal rules of baseball apply. The student will return each card to the box when finished with it, then select a new card and solve the word problem on it; this will continue until the student has answered enough questions correctly to score two runs (winning the game) or has answered three questions incorrectly. Laminated “base runners” have been included so that the student may “move” his runners around the bases.

DIRECTIONS FOR USE:

It's the bottom of the ninth, and your team trails, 1-0…
…Lead your team to victory by scoring two runs.

Each of the Baseball Cards has a question relating to baseball statistics, such as batting average and earned run average. Draw a card and solve the problem on it (don't use the same card twice in one game). Every correct solution is worth a base hit. Every incorrect solution is an out. The correct answer is on the back of the card - no peeking! Keep drawing cards, one at a time, until you either score two runs (in which case you win) or reach three outs. For each question, show all your work on one of the worksheets at right. Hand in the completed worksheet showing a win to receive five extra credit points on your next test. Please return the base runners to the front of the worksheets folder when you are done.

Most of the questions have a value of “Single” - for a correct answer, you may place a base runner (from the folder) on first base and advance, by ONE base, any runners already on base (a runner on third base scores, a runner on second base moves to third and a runner on first base moves to second).

Several questions are “Doubles” - for a correct answer, you may place a runner on second base and any runners already on base may advance TWO bases.

Two questions are “Home Runs” - if you get the question right, the batter and any runners on base each score a run.

If you have not scored any runs before reaching three outs, the game is over; take a new worksheet and play again! Also, a tie is not good enough - if you only score one run, take a new worksheet and play again.

Remember that batting average, slugging percentage and winning percentage are expressed to three decimal places; earned run average and strikeouts per nine innings are expressed to two decimal places; and innings pitched can be in thirds of an inning. All other stats are whole numbers.

The following formulas might be useful:

TIME: A typical student should need approximately 5-10 minutes to win the game.

SPECIAL CONSTRUCTION: The script title on the board was created in the style of the lettering that might appear on the front of a baseball/softball jersey, with script lettering and a tail to underline the words “Play Ball.” This was done by using the Script MT Bold font in Microsoft Word to create the words and adding an appropriately-sized tail edited in Adobe Photoshop. The complete image was sized to 27 inches wide, reversed, and printed onto red and white paper which was then cut to shape (the image was reversed to prevent the printing lines from being visible). The infield is drawn to scale with Major League Baseball specifications, with some slight modifications to simplify scaling calculations (for example, based on the scale of 1 inch to 7 feet, the bases are 91 feet apart, not 90 feet). The laminated base runners are based on online clip art, with Adobe Photoshop used to create the halo effect; each base runner has the hook component of Velcro attached to the reverse side; the loop component is used as the bases on the field.

CREDIT: Students who successfully complete the bulletin board, by turning in a worksheet indicating a win, will receive five extra credit points on their next test.

Rick Pearce
Spring 2007