4I: Integrating Educational Fun into Teaching Statistics

Larry Lesser (University of Texas at El Paso) & Dennis Pearl (Pennsylvania State University)


Many statistics teachers are aware of the value and sources for educational fun items but may not visualize how to integrate them into their teaching. We’ll address this issue for common introductory statistics topics: stating literature-based learning objectives, providing a sequence of related items (e.g., cartoons, games, jokes, poems, songs, videos, etc. from the CAUSEweb.org fun collection or elsewhere), and integrating them with specific active learning tasks to guide a lesson delivery or trajectory for a complete fun-enhanced pedagogy. We explain and model this approach in a column (since fall 2019) in the international journal Teaching Statistics to expand opportunities for teachers to thoughtfully use educational fun in teaching that is informed by diversity, equity, and inclusion sensibilities. Participants will model the approach hands-on by alternating between small-group activities/brainstorming and full-group debriefings addressing critiques and demonstrating the planning of impactful lessons.