Day 52: Spinning Pennies
In AP Statistics, we are beginning our journey into probability. The math teacher in me wants to cover everything about the concepts and processes of counting and probability, but I do restrain myself since that is NOT the curriculum nor focus in AP Statistics. I decided this year to use Doug Tyson and Jason Molesky’s activity “Is This Penny Fair (Spinning Pennies)” with teacher notes to begin our unit. It is all laid out and it gives a nice way to subtly introduce the idea of significance and inference tests. I have used rolling tacks in the past as students don’t know what the probability of having a tack land point down is…its not in their previous experience, but thought I’d try something new. I think I want to rewrite the tack problem in the same way that the penny problem is set up because the kids already had an idea of what was supposed to happen, so lost some of the wonder I had hoped for. When do you take the time to revise an activity rather than use as is and how do you decide you need to?