Fraction Ball

Fraction Ball repaints the lines on a standard basketball court to help children learn fractions and decimals.


5 Step Guide to

Fraction Ball


Fraction Ball "Welcome to Fraction Ball on ChangeX, brought to you by the Playful Learning Landscapes Action Network! It’s time to reimagine everyday spaces as playful learning opportunities for children and families - and that includes the neighborhood basketball court where children can build math skills while having fun. Find out here how you can bring Fraction Ball to your community." - Dr. Andres Bustamante, Assistant Professor, University of California Irvine and Playful Learning Landscapes consultant

5 Steps

Who? Someone who...

Resource Checklist


You'll need to dedicate a half day per week to getting the project up and running in your community.

Start with an existing basketball court with community access.

  • Enhance fraction, decimal, and arithmetic achievement by activating Fraction Ball on an existing basketball court where community members gather. Identify a community and a potential court for Fraction Ball. 

Successful initiatives require planning, coordination, and community buy-in. Consider who should be sitting at the table with you? How will the team work together and allocate responsibilities?

  • Create a project team who represent the critical stakeholders and who are willing and able to see the project through. Make sure to include the organization or group who owns the basketball court!
  • Consult with community members to ensure that they are on board with the idea. The greater community ownership the greater the potential for sustainability and relevance.
  • Identify potential partners who might support the work.
  • Build a volunteer community group that will work with you.

Identify who controls the basketball court that you want to transform into Fraction Ball and make sure that the site is appropriate and available for use. Ensure that you have any permissions that are needed to proceed with the work and know if there are any regulations governing the activity.  

Assess potential vendors who can execute the project design within the allocated budget.

  • Decide with your vendor which material will work best for your location (consider weather, usage, and maintenance). We often use non-slip paint for Fraction Ball courts.
  • Decide who will paint the court - the community or a vendor?
  • Consider how signage or “prompts” will be mounted.

Make a plan to maintain the site and rejuvenate the paint as needed. This might include identifying resources for maintenance and oversight.

Using the plan you created with your vendor (materials, etc) paint your Fraction Ball design on to court! Mount prompts near the court.

Promote your Fraction Ball Court.

  • Share on social media
  • Get on the agenda of a community meeting 

Consider a kick-off event such as a Block Party to show off the Fraction Ball court!

Observe how families use and interact with the space. Share your experience with other communities.

Enjoy! And think about how you can continue to spread playful learning throughout your community.