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For this lesson, not much prior knowledge is needed in order to follow along.

Students do
need to understand the implications of each situation, such that a die has 6 sides labeled one
through six, but these ideas are made more clear by the Smartboard interactive features which
show the die as if we were rolling it in real life. Hence, if a student came in not having used a die
or a spinner before, they should still be able to follow along with the lesson. The lesson is also
very intuitive because it does not have a surplus of vocabulary and rather relies mostly on logic.
In order to address the needs of ELL students, I would break down any definitions slowly and
then refer back to these terms throughout the lesson to keep reasserting their meaning in context
to the lesson. This lesson is more of an introduction and so the content is not very rigorous. It is
more meant to be a good way to tie in real world context to probability related topics and to start
thinking in terms of possible outcomes and the likelihood that a certain event will occur. Since
we are also starting with simple situations that the students can see on the Smartboard, having
these visual representations alongside prior knowledge and verbal explanations will help students
of various academic levels keep up with the lesson. I hope to take advantage of the technology
used in the lesson to engage students. Since the Smartboard uses multimedia versions of
common manipulatives, I can have an interactive aspect to the lesson without having students get
distracted or off task with physical objects on their desks. Students can still participate by
coming up to the board or assisting in answering questions. I can also have students discuss
questions as a small group or in partners before we share as a class to see if answers match up.
Also, the lesson can be very flexible. The questions already on the Smartboard lesson are
relatively basic but it is easy to come up with more difficult questions or elaborate on a certain
scenario if the students seem to be catching on easily. For example, I can ask What is the
probability we do not roll a 4 or a 6? or What is the probability that we roll an even number or
a 3? Although we can also address these topics in detail in another lesson, they can be used to
get student to use critical thinking as to how we would address these questions based off what
they already know. The video is another engaging way to propose an assessment problem to the
students. Depending on time, it can be viewed in class or at home in a flipped classroom
method. I hope that students use the video to view probability in a real-world situation and also
change up traditional classroom assignments by presenting the problem in a video form. Students
would be able to access the video at home on a class website. If students did not have access to a
computer at home, accommodations would be made. For example, I could write up the scenario
in the video for those students and then we would re-watch the video in class so they can see it
come to life.

Alyssa Schneider
Date: December 19, 2014
Grade Level: 7
Time Allotted: 50 minutes
Probability Introduction
I.

II.

III.

IV.

Goals:
To get a general understanding of probability and how to find the probability of
an event
To understand the difference between a probability and a sample space
To be able to provide reasoning behind explanations
Objectives:
Students should be able to define probability in their own words
Students should be able to explain the probability of a certain outcome of an event
Students should be able to identify the sample space of an experiment
Materials and Resources:
Smartboard
Students should have their notebook or paper to write notes on
Motivation:
Start with Today we are going to start looking at probability and where we see it
used in everyday life. For example, has anyone ever played a game that involved
a spinner or dice?
Have a short discussion about probability in board games and other contexts
students come up with

Transition: Wrap up the discussion and transition into the lesson. Have students get out notebook
and bring up the Smartboard lesson. Lets take a look at how we define probability and how it is
used.
V.

Lesson Procedure:
Start the Smartboard lesson and encourage participation throughout the lesson by
either class/partner discussions or having students come up and preform tasks on
the Smartboard. Students should take notes in their notebook or on a separate
paper.
Does anyone think they can define probability for me? What does it mean when I
ask you to find the probability of something? After some students share ideas,
reveal the definition on the Smartboard.
Ask Can anyone take a guess as to what we mean when we say the sample
space of an experiment/event? After some short discussion, reveal the definition
on the Smartboard.

Transition: Now lets apply this to some scenarios you may have seen before.

On the next slide is a die. You can roll the die on the Smartboard. The question
asks, What is the probability of rolling a 4 on a standard die? Roll the die a few
times and discuss this question with the class. Ask questions such as How many

options are there for us to roll? and If I roll the dice 6 times and I never get a 4,
does that mean that the probability is not 1/6? Also discuss the shortened
notation of P(roll a 4).
Have students discuss the sample space of rolling a standard die. Fill in the
answer on the Smartboard. Ask, Is the probability the same as the sample space
of an event?
Go to the slide with the coin on it. Flip the coin about 10-20 times and add tally
marks to the chart depending on if the coin lands on heads or tails. Ask questions
such as What should the probability be of getting heads? Of getting tails?,
Does our chart show the true probability? Why or why not? and/or What
would we expect if we flipped the coin 200 times?
Discuss what the sample space is for flipping a coin and fill it in on the
Smartboard.
Go to the slide with the spinner. Preform the same experiment as with the coin.
Discuss What should the probability be of landing on each color? and What do
we have to assume about the area taken up by each color on the spinner to know
the probabilities?
Fill in the sample space for spinning that particular spinner.

Transition: Lets practice what weve done so far. You can work alone or with someone next to
you. When you are done please wait patiently and then we will go over the answer.

Have students work alone or with the person next to them and answer the
question in their notebooks. Then come back together to discuss the answer and
see if the students understand how to apply what they learned so far. Students
should fine that the P(red marble) = 4/12 = and P(candy cane) = 3/9 = 1/3 so
the probability of picking a candy cane is greater.

Transition: Now we are going to watch a video that proposes a probability problem. You will
complete this problem with the rest of class time or at home tonight and we will discuss it
tomorrow. When you are watching this video, write down any information you think will help
you solve the problem
VI.

Closure:
Play the video for the students. Also, make the video available via class website,
email etc. so that students can reference the video again if they need to. Students
will watch the video and come back tomorrow with a solution or their ideas
towards a possible solution. The video is of a dinner party problem that introduces
the next lesson on probability distributions. The students may not be able to verify
their solution but they should try to think critically about the scenario.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=paFvNhJ5xUo&list=UUGVLdnBlWQCVmx
pAC999Shg&index=1
If you need to watch the video again you can find it on the class website. We will
discuss this problem tomorrow at the beginning of class. The video introduces
some of the material we will cover this week so try to apply some of what we

VII.

VIII.

IX.

learned today and give your best effort to come to class tomorrow ready to discuss
what you thought of.
Extension:
If you get to the video and still have more class time, have students discuss and
come up with a solution in class for the remainder of the time.
If there is more time after the video, reference the last slide of the Smartboard in
which there are two dice being rolled. The question asks, What is the probability
that the sum of the two dice adds up to 12? Here students need to consider
different options that can be rolled that will add up to 8 (4 & 4, 6 & 2, 3 & 5).
Prompt with questions such as, How many options do we have now that there are
two die? and What are the different rolls we can get that would add up to 8?
Assessment:
Students are asked to apply prior knowledge to try to explain the definition of
probability. This helps assess where we are at before the lesson starts.
Students will interact with the lesson via the Smartboard to fill in answers
presented on the notebook slides. (Example: What is the sample space for flipping
a coin?)
Students will complete the practice problem comparing two events after we have
gone through several examples of finding probabilities.
Students will watch the video in class or at home if time does not permit and
answer the questions presented by the scenario in the video.
Standards:

CCSS.MATH.PRACTICE.MP4 Model with mathematics: Students will apply


probability to real life manipulatives (dice, coins, spinners)
CCSS.MATH.PRACTICE.MP3 Construct viable arguments and critique the
reasoning of others: students should back up their responses with logical evidence
based off of knowledge of the manipulative or the interactive on the Smartboard.
CCSS.MATH.PRACTICE.MP8 Look for and express regularity in repeated
reasoning: students should recognize patterns in probabilities of certain events
such as that the probability of rolling a certain number on a 6-sided fair die is 1/6
for each number 1-6 because they are all equally likely to occur.
CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.HSS.MD.B.5: Weigh the possible outcomes of a
decision by assigning probabilities to payoff values and finding expected values.
CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.HSS.MD.B.5.A: Find the expected payoff for a game
of chance.
CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.7.SP.C.6: Approximate the probability of a chance
event by collecting data on the chance process and produces it and observing its
long-run relative frequency, and predict the approximate relative frequency given
the probability.

Technology Reflection
I felt that the use of technology enhanced my lesson. I took typical probability problems,
but the Smartboard let me bring them to life in a multimedia context. I think that although this
can also be done with manipulatives, such as giving each student a die or a coin, we keep the
whole class focused and on task by turning it into a group lesson where students are expected to
participate and join into discussions. The Smartboard is an engaging tool that puts a new spin on
a traditional lesson. It also allows me, as the teacher, to organize my lesson efficiently and be
flexible in the way I teach it. If I want to spend more time on a particular problem or add in a
blank slide to do some extra work directly on the board or write down some ideas, I can do that
easily on the Smartboard. The other technology aspect of my lesson is the video portion. The
video has to do with a uniform probability distribution. The question it asks students is, Where
should a guest sit so that they have the greatest probability of ending up with the gift? and the
answer is that it doesnt matter and everyone is actually equally likely. This technique is similar
to a flipped classroom where students do some of the learning at home via the video so that we
can take class time to share ideas rather than spend it doing the entire critical thinking process. I
think that this is helpful because it is hard to put a time constraint on how much time we could
spend brainstorming ideas on this problem. Using this method, students should ideally come
ready to being discussion right away and we can arrive at a conclusion earlier. I feel that both the
use of the Smartboard and the video present the material in a more innovative and appealing way
than traditional methods. I was inspired to do the video portion from some of the Dan Meyer
lessons I had looked at earlier in the semester. This video does not exactly follow his 3-step
process but I think it does a good job of giving a nontraditional homework assignment that also
incorporates critical thinking and problem solving. In the process of doing this lesson, I learned
more about the Smartboard technology and although I have made videos in the past, for this
video I thought about what really made a take-home video a good option for a math class. I felt
that it should present a scenario in a clear fashion, make students think critically, and be short
enough that it serves the purpose of being a suitable replacement to a written problem. If the
video is too long or confusing, the technology fails to be useful and students are more likely to
be confused and not do the homework. If it is interesting and well-made, the students are more
likely to get intrigued, take the time to think about the problem, and come to class actually
wanting to know the answer. I could see myself using both of these methods in my future
classroom.