University Of Tasmania
151174 - Exploring the potential for student development.pdf (513.85 kB)

Exploring the potential for student development of the big ideas of statistics with random trials: the case of the mystery spinner

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conference contribution
posted on 2023-05-23, 15:25 authored by Jane WatsonJane Watson, Noleine FitzallenNoleine Fitzallen
This paper reports on the potential for engaging students in an activity that considers the interconnectedness of the five Big Ideas of Statistics in the context of conducting random trials. In the study, two classes of Year 6 students (aged 11-12 years) used TinkerPlots to determine the sample space of a “Mystery Spinner.” Analysed for this paper were data collected from entries made in completed workbooks while engaged in the learning activity and responses to relevant questions in an end-of-year questionnaire from 27 students. The results indicated using an activity that included a probability model contributed to students working mathematically with percentages and frequencies and supported the development of intuitions about randomness and informal inference. This was promoted by students analysing the variation in the distribution of data and describing their expectations about an unknown sample space.


Australian Research Council


Publication title

Proceedings of the 44th Annual Conference of the Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia


N Fitzallen, C Murphy & V Hatisaru




Faculty of Education



Place of publication


Event title

2022 Mathematics Education Research Group of Australasia

Event Venue

Launceston, Tasmania

Date of Event (Start Date)


Date of Event (End Date)


Rights statement

Copyright 2022 MERGA

Repository Status

  • Open

Socio-economic Objectives

Primary education

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