Beacon Lesson Plan Library

What Are the Odds?

Alice Bobe
Bay District Schools

Description

Using the novel JIM UGLY, by Sid Fleischman, students conduct an experiment to test prediction of whether the odds were in favor of or against Jake finding his dad.

Objectives

The student predicts the likelihood of simple events occurring.

Materials

-Copies of JIM UGLY, by Sid Fleischman, Dell Yearling Books, 1993, for each student
-Dice of two colors for each pair of students, with a bag or container
-Board with marker and eraser
-Internet access

Preparations

1. Obtain a novel, JIM UGLY, by Sid Fleischman, for each student
2. Read the novel prior to assigning to students.
3. Gather dice of two colors for each pair of students, with a bag or container
4. Obtain a board with marker and eraser
5. Gather paper and pencils
6. Obtain access to Internet

Procedures

After reading the book, JIM UGLY, by Sid Fleischman:
1. Ask students, -Do you think that Jake could have found his dad without the help of Jim Ugly?- Discuss possible answers.
2. Tell the students that they are going to do an experiment to find out whether the odds were in favor of or against Jake finding his dad.
3. Ask the students to make a prediction before doing this experiment. This may be done as a whole group or partners. Example: -Our prediction is that there will be more yes answers than no answers.-
4. Pair students and give each group a pair of dice, one labeled -yes- (or you may use a color such as green) and the other labeled -no- (or the color red) in a bag or container.
5. Ask them to pull a die out of the bag or container twenty times and keep a running tally of the outcome each time. Return the die to the bag or container for each experiment.
6. Write on the board:
Green ( yes)........................................Red (no)

___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___..................___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___

___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___..................___ ___ ___ ___ ___ ___


Ask, -What do the tallies tell you?- Discuss possible answers.
7. Find the odds in favor of Jake finding his dad by using this formula:
Number of green (yes) / Total number of tosses. Use class results, for example: 9/20
8. Find the odds against Jake finding his dad by using this formula:
Number of red (no) / Total number of tosses . Use class results, for example: 11/20.
9. Ask each partner/group to share their finding with the class and account for Jake's success on finding his dad using the formulas. Each group will give their results.
10. Ask the students to compare their results with each group. Discuss all outcomes in a whole group.

Assessments

Assess the final activity using the criteria in the checklist (see attached file).

Extensions

The students may play a coin flip game on the Internet using this URL:

Silver Burdett Ginn Mathematics at http://www.sbgmath.com

Select Grade 5, then Chapter 12, Coin Flip

Attached Files

A checklist with criteria to help with assessment of the lesson.     File Extension: pdf

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