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NBA basketball board game helps teach IPS students math

The board game uses NBA and WNBA stats to help the player learn fundamental math skills in a fun and engaging way.

INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana Pacers and the Lilly Foundation partnered to tip off the "NBA Math Hoops Program." Math and basketball are two subjects the sixth grade students at Daniel Webster School don't play about.

Thursday, they got a little help with their math lessons from the pros with the Pacers Foundation and the Lilly Foundation through a game called NBA Math Hoops.

The board game uses NBA and WNBA stats to help the player learn fundamental math skills in a fun and engaging way.

"Basketball is kind of connected to math because you have to add up the points," said sixth grader Isabella Vasco.

The foundations behind the event hope it reinforces the importance of STEM and its usefulness on and off the court.

"It can take you so far. Math is in everything you do, whether you're on the court or off the court," said Corey Wilson, vice president of community engagement for the Pacers Foundation.

Indiana Fever star Danielle Robinson said growing up she also loved math and saw herself in the students in the room.

"It's very important to invest in the youth. The youth are the future," Robinson said.

The game not only taught them about math, but also sportsmanship. Students signed a sportsmanship contract before the game started.

"They're so eager to learn at this age, just about life," Robinson said.

The sixth graders appreciated the opportunity to show off their hoop skills. They plan to take the lesson and share it with their friends and with anyone else who might be struggling with math.

Over the next four years, the Pacers Foundation plans to work with IPS to implement the program throughout the school district.

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