Math madness in March

Austad hosts classwide activity


Lilly Fandel-Thompson

Park math teacher Chad Austad works with students on their March Madness brackets. Austad holds his annual March Madness bracket competition, as the tournament kicks off in March 2023.

Owen McColgan

To commemorate and incorporate the basketball tournament March Madness into learning, math teacher Chad Austad created a classwide bracket competition in order to win prizes such as extra credit or a free lunch. According to Austad, he said including the bracket is a fun opportunity for his students to enjoy math class more.

“It’s just fun to break away from that everyday math to see which kids get into it and its just something fun to do outside of the math class,” Austad said. “We still do the math and some people that don’t ever watch college basketball get into it and a lot of times they’ll do really well even though they don’t know anything about basketball.”

For sophomore Ryan Moran, he said he enjoys March Madness because it’s a very exciting and random challenge, as well as the chance of earning a reward. 

“I enjoy that it’s so unpredictable, you never know what’s going to happen,” Moran said.“I also like that (Austad) gets you lunch if you win, which is a great prize.”

Freshman Ted Mccarren said that it’s a unique opportunity to escape regular math class lessons with something that is out of the ordinary.

It’s fun to break away from that everyday math when we do math lessons every day, but it’s fun to  see which kids get into it,” McCarren said. 

Austad said he appreciates watching his students interact by working together and competing to win. 

I enjoy looking at the games with my students and chatting with them about their choices,” Austad said. “So it’s again something fun that’s outside of math that we can all bond with.”

Freshman Ted Mccarren said that he thinks its fun for students to have a shot at winning a fun reward. 

“It’s cool that you can win a meal,” Mccarren said. “It’s also nice you can win extra credit too if you don’t want the whole thing.”