Technology Tools for Thinking and Reasoning about Probability
In this workshop we will investigate some mathematics topics common to middle school curricula within the theme of probability. In this context we will explore the Math Tools digital library and several software tools that contribute in some way to mathematical understanding, problem solving, reflection and discussion.
In Navigating through Probability in Grades 6-8, the authors note
... the Data Analysis and Probability Standards in Principles and Standards for School Mathematics (NCTM 2000) is an affirmation of a fundamental goal of the mathematics curriculum: to develop critical thinking and sound judgement based on data. These skills are essential not only for a select few, but for every informed citizen and consumer. Staggering amounts of information confront us in almost every aspect of contemporary life, and being able to ask good questions, use data wisely, evaluate claims that are based in the data, and formulate defensible conclusions in the face of uncertainty have become basic skills in our information age.
In this workshop, we will:
There will be opportunities to share why you were drawn to a workshop with this focus, and what you would like to accomplish as we work together. Certainly there is more to discuss about probability than we can cover in this workshop. Above all else, we want to share a community and resources that support us as professionals in our ongoing efforts to improve our teaching and make use of new tools.
Notice the NCTM Data Analysis and Probability Standard for Grades 6-8 (opens in new browser window). Is there anything there that surprises or confuses you? Aren't these quite common topics in middle school classrooms? And yet for many of us, representing the listed topics as probability (or even part of the middle school curiculum) may be something very new.
Note: The NCTM Standards combine probability with data analysis. We recognize that the two are intimately related, but will focus the majority of our emphasis in this workshop on probability.
You will have flexibility within each week but the design of the workshop and the value for all of the participants depends on beginning and completing the activities during the assigned week and the full workshop within six weeks.
Each unit will contain
To gain the most from the activities, we are encouraging reflection along five dimensions: mathematics, technology, teaching, learning, and assessment. We look forward to your contributions to the workshop's discussions as you consider each.
Our approach is to
© 2014 The Math Forum @ Drexel,
part of NSF's NSDL
This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant DUE-0226284. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.