Probability and Statistics are increasingly being given an important place in the K-12 mathematics curriculum. According to the NCTM Curriculum and Evaluation Standards (1989), students should learn to apply probability and statistics concepts to solve problems and evaluate information in the world around them. The statistics standards suggest using hands-on activities involving collecting and organizing data, representing and modeling data including the use of technology, and communicating ideas verbally and in written reports. Teachers are encouraged to help students develop important ideas (for example, about distributions, randomness, and bias) and gain experience in choosing appropriate techniques to use in analyzing data. Many teachers are currently using materials from recent projects or projects in development that have developed curricula and software to implement the NCTM Standards (e.g., the Quantitative Literacy Project, the Reasoning under Uncertainty Project, and the ChancePlus Project). These new materials encourage teachers to have students work on statistical projects: formulate research questions, collect and analyze data, and write up the results. Working on statistical projects individually or in groups engages students in learning about statistics and helps them to integrate the knowledge they have learned.
- Prof Dev