A Letter to the Teacher
Thank you for your interest in this lesson about descriptive statistics. Before you begin, you should know a little something about my intentions in designing this lesson.
1) These Web pages are not meant to act as the teacher.
Although there is enough information here for students to get a good feeling for doing descriptive statistics on their own, much of the lesson is dependent upon group work and class discussion. I have included many open-ended questions meant to spark discussion into the major concepts of statistics. The classroom teacher is essential in guiding these discussions and posing more questions (the students should do most if not all of the answering, though).
2) Excel can greatly increase the effectiveness of these lessons.
I have provided many downloadable spreadsheets (in Excel) whereon the students can manipulate data to view the properties of different statistics (ie: stability of mean vs. median). If Excel is not available (or some other compatible program), the lessons will still be comprehensive, but the students may need to make their own tables and play with the numbers.
3) Make certain you load the images.
NOTE: When the spreadsheet is downloaded, it should be opened through the Excel program. If it is merely clicked on, it usually will not work properly.
Many of the images are important graphics essential for understanding the concepts (and many are for decoration and just make the lesson more fun).
4) Begin downloading Web-pages during your discussions.
Sometimes (as I am sure you are well aware) it takes a while to download a Web page. Don't let this be downtime for your class. There are not many things in life less interesting than waiting for a computer to load.
I hope you and your class enjoy these lessons. Please let me know if you have any comments or suggestions. I'm always looking to improve these pages.
Go to the lesson.
send comments and questions to Jay Hill