At the last interview I attended, I had to teach a 15 minute introduction to Probability (yes, you heard right - 15 minutes...! I mean, what can you usefully achieve in 15 minutes..). Anyway, as we all do, I prepared a lesson that went over and above what was required - "just in case". I didn't use it all, just the parts that could be considered as the introduction. But I thought that it was such a shame to waste it, so here it is.
Now, I know that probability isn't taught in the US until G6. But that's no excuse to deprive our kiddos. At a very young age they are aware of chance - it enters into everyday language that they are probably unaware they are even using. "I'll probably have burgers for lunch"; "I'm not sure if I'll be going to the game"; "I definitely won't be able to finish my homework tonight" - you get the drift.
Probability is also a great way to develop thinking skills in the classroom. Introduce Talk Maths and get them to reason their way through the problems with a partner or team. It's a real lightbulb moment - both for them as they work their way through the game of chance, and for me as a teacher when I see how thoroughly engrossed they are in their deliberations.
So why wait until G6? Give your kiddos a headstart by introducing probability and chance in G5 or even G4. Believe me, they'll handle it. With this packet children don't need any prior knowledge, so you can use it whenever you like - as a time filler at the end of term, as part of your thinking skills agenda, or just whenever. It contains everything you need to teach a stand alone lesson - fully differentiated lesson plan (in Word so you can adapt it to suit your needs), colourful, easy to understand slideshow, activities and resources, and even a homework sheet! Just print and you're good to go. Click on the thumbnail for more info. I'll be posting a short preview in a day or two.
And yes, the chances of it being another sweltering day tomorrow are - certain...! Allelujah!