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Statistical Shenanigans

These lesson plans and worksheets teach students in grades 9 and up the statistical principles they need to analyze data rationally.


The Building Critical Thinkers lesson plans and worksheets are designed to assist educators in effectively teaching critical thinking skills to their students. With some modifications, these lessons can also be suitable for home use.

The Statistical Shenanigans bundle is suitable for students in grades 9 and up. These are our most advanced worksheets; even adults may find these lessons useful! The bundle includes 22 pages of lesson plans and worksheets covering four topics:

  1. Absolute vs. Relative Change
  2. Randomness
  3. Cherry Picking
  4. Regression to the Mean

1. Absolute vs. Relative Change

In this lesson, students are shown several claims like “increase your chances by 900%!” as a way to introduce them to misleading mathematical claims in advertising.

2. Randomness

This lesson teaches students that random things aren’t evenly spaced out. Randomness is clumpy. Whether it’s events that “come in 3’s” or finding multiple people with similar birthdays, our pattern-recognition skills work overtime.

3. Cherry Picking

This lesson introduces students to the concept of cherry picking . It starts out with a simple example of a series of coin flips and extends to a past study of cancer incidence with cell phone usage.

4. Regression to the Mean

Regression to the mean is a statistical concept that suggests outliers are likely to be followed by more typical values.
This lesson shows studenst what regression to the mean could mean in our everyday lives.

Bonus: Assignment

These lessons are followed by an assignment that will help students develop critical thinking skills by debunking statistical misconceptions.