Teaching Data and Chance in Grades 5-8

Dates: August 15 - 19, 2011

Time: 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

Location: UMass Amherst Campus

Instructors: Cliff Konold and Kosoom Kreetong

Workshop fee: None

PDPs: Up to 30 professional development points

Computers: You must furnish your own laptop computer (MACs or PCs). We will need to be able to install software on your computer.


In this weeklong workshop, we explore fundamental ideas in data and chance using the data-visualization and modeling tool TinkerPlots 2.0 , which was specifically designed for use by middle school students. Investigations will involve creating and managing data; interpretations of common data representations; methods of data description and group comparison using measures of centers (averages) and spread (variation); measuring and modeling co-variation; and modeling chance. In addition to exploring these topics, we’ll also discuss research on student reasoning about data and chance, implications of this research for student learning and classroom practice, and how these ideas relate to the new Common Core Standards.

Instructor Bios:

Cliff Konold is director of the Scientific Reasoning Research Institute at UMass Amherst. For the past 30 years he has been researching how people, from Kindergartners to adults, reason about chance and data and applying this research to the design of instruction and educational software. He heads the project team that develops TinkerPlots, which we’ll be using in the workshop. With funding from the National Science Foundation, he currently directs the Data Games Project — exploring how data collected while play computer games can productively be used in the classroom to teach students about data and chance.

Kosoom Kreetong is a graduate student in the School of Education at UMass Amherst and research assistant on the Data Games Project in the Scientific Reasoning Research Institute. Prior to coming to UMass, she worked at The Institute for the Promotion of Teaching Science and Technology (IPST), in Bangkok, Thailand, where she developed mathematics curricula, instructional materials, and designed and conducted teacher in-service programs. She has both a BS and MS in Mathematics.


We must receive the completed application by June 3. You can email it to kkreeton@educ.umass.edu, or send it by fax to 413-545-1801. You can direct questions to the same email address, or phone 413-545-5886. Enrollment is limited to 20 participants with preference to teachers applying in groups from the same school. We will notify you by email of our decision regarding your application.

Download the application form:

Click the attachment link below.

Application_form.doc33.5 KB