LeeAnn Watts

Probability and Statistics

Introduction to Probability

LeeAnn Watts
To obtain a downloadable copy of the worksheet that accompanies this bulletin board, click on the button below.

SUBJECT: Probability and Statistics

TOPIC: Introduction to Probability

INTERACTIVITY: To operate the bulletin board each student will role play as 5 different trick or treaters and reach into the pumpkin consisting of treats. They will then record the number of the desired treat onto the attached activity sheet.

DIRECTIONS FOR USE: (Posted on the bulletin board)

  • A crowd of pint-sized ghouls and goblins gather on your porch steps awaiting their chance to reach in your pumpkin and snatch a handful of treats for their superb Halloween spirit. However, your ‘bag of treats’ is not the average bowl of candy. It consists of a little more – monster’s favorite treats. Every year we tend to spend more and more money on our treats. So, we need to start keeping track of what each goblin and ghoul snatches from our pumpkin.
  • Complete the activity sheet to help track what treats are being taken. Some treats were harder to come by than others; therefore, we are only concerned with the most expensive treat – the eyeballs. We need to determine the average probability of an eyeball being chosen from our pumpkin. If the odds and cost of the eyeballs are too high, then the chances of us being able to include them next year are low.
  • Directions for the activity sheet:
    • To keep track the eyeballs being snatched from our pumpkin, we must first play the role of each goblin and ghoul at our porch steps. First, reach into the pumpkin and quickly grasp a small handful of monster treats. Record the number of eyeballs snatched (do not put your treats back into the pumpkin – the other ghouls and goblins would not put their treats back in). Repeat this step four times, once for each ghoul or goblin.
    • Next, you must find the probability of an eyeball being snatched each time. Then you are to determine the average probability of an eyeball being snatched of the five ghouls and/or goblins.

TIME: 20 minutes (including the activity sheet)

SPECIAL CONSTRUCTION: Just a simple hollow pumpkin in place of an urn filled with sticky Halloween worms, eyeballs, bugs, etc.

CREDIT: As students complete the bulletin board, they will receive participation points and a homework grade.

LeeAnn Watts
Fall 2006