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Discover the world of probabilities

Year 8 mathematicians explored the world of probability from a practical perspective this week.

In theory the number of times an outcome should be achieved is equal to p x n (the probability of getting that outcome x the number of times the experiment is conducted). Furthermore, as the number of experiments increases, the closer the number of outcomes should replicate the theoretical model. 

Year 8 tested the theory by each tossing a coin 40 times and they recorded the number of heads and tails obtained. Some students had unbiased coins and obtained exactly 20 heads and 20 tails. Roy had the most biased coin with 25 heads and only 15 tails obtained.

As we collated our data at first, we found that as the number of tosses of the coin increased, we got further from theory, but then suddenly after 320 tosses of the coin, the trend reversed. After 640 pieces of data had been recorded, we found that the class had recorded 320 heads and 320 tails, meaning that our practical experiment proved the theory to be exactly true!

 

It was a noisy and vibrant lesson and a lot of learning of key concepts was seen to take place!

 

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