The students will be looking at a calculating mean question to get them ready for the day’s lesson. The question involves the amount of cans of soda 6th grade student’s drink in a day. They will be asked to calculate the mean and explain how they got their answer along with deciding if the mean is a good way to describe the data(SMP2) This problem is an informal assessment of how well the students can find the mean of a data set.** In this problem, I’m looking to see if students can calculate the mean and then be able say that the mean is not representative of the data. The mean in this problem is 2.5 and some students drink much more and some much less. The data itself is symmetrical with a small spread.*** I will be watching to see that students use the data value of zero in their mean calculation.
The middle part of this lesson will consist of a power point presentation on applying the measures of central tendency and following up with an Around the room. The power point will focus on three concepts: choosing the best description for the data, exploring the affects of an outlier, and applying mean to real life scenarios. Slides are presented so there is one direct instruction with answers and one similar problem for students to grapple with on their own. It might be best to allow students time to talk over and explain their answers with their tablemates.
Following the instruction, the students will be participating in an around the room activity with a partner. The ATR (around the room) will consist of 13 problems for the students to solve. The questions will focus on the measures of central tendency and what they tell us and how they can be affected.
Before moving to the final wrap up, have the pairs of students show how they solved one of the around the room problems. This is a great way to check for misunderstandings before moving on to a new concept. Group similar concept problems together to build a common understanding. For example: describing data sets, affects of outliers, and finding missing values.
The students will be answering the following questions to assess their understanding of the measures of central tendency.
1. Describe a situation in which the mean best describes the data set (Looking for them to say that data values will be similar and contain no outlier)
2. Tell which measure of central tendency must be a data value (mode)
3. Explain how an outlier affects the mean, median, mode and range. An outlier will bring the mean up or down depending on its value. It generally does not affect the median. The mode is affected only if it is the outlier. The range will be affected because the spread of data will be larger.