Teacher-Written Lesson

March Madness and the Catholic Understanding of the Good Life

  • Written by Sophia Institute for Teachers
  • 30 minutes

Lesson Overview

Each Spring, sports fans across the country follow the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Tournament affectionately known as “March Madness.” In addition to being a fun diversion, the tournament gives us an opportunity to explore some important topics from a Catholic perspective. What is the nature of competition? In what ways can sports help us –both players and spectators—to grow in virtue? And finally, what is leisure? Is it merely a lack of work? How does leisure differ from passive relaxation or idleness?

Our culture tends to “measure” us by how productive we are. Society tells us to constantly work, get a high-paying job so we can buy more and more things, and spend what little free time we have left resting so we can return to our jobs “refreshed” for more work. Is this the right way to order our lives? Can leisure time be good, and even holy? 

In this lesson your students will:

Explore the nature of healthy competition.
Assess the significance of virtue in sports.
Understand the true meaning of leisure and its importance in our lives.
Develop a plan for the cultivation of holy leisure.

Recommended For

Grade Level: High School, Middle School

Subject: Civics, Government, and Economics, Civics, Civic Virtue, Religion

Learner: Traditional Classroom, Homeschooled Students, CCD/Parish-Based Education, Classical Education

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