Look at Part 1. What is the population in this context?
Possible response: all the teachers in Melinda’s school.
What type of people do you think Melinda included in her samples? Explain your reasoning.
Teachers; encourage students to talk about how the sample must be representative of the population Melinda is investigating.
If Melinda has random and representative sample data, what can she use the data for?
She can generate statistics that can be used to estimate the value of the population characteristic under investigation.
In Sample 1, what does a mean of 52 and a MAD of 8 tell you about the data?
The average reading time is 52 minutes and the data values in this sample vary, on average, by 8 minutes above or below this mean.
What is the mean for Sample 3?
What is the MAD for Sample 3?
Look at the MAD values for all three samples. If you had to estimate the amount of variability in the entire population, what would you say? Explain your reasoning.
Possible response: I would estimate the MAD to be 8 minutes. All three samples had the same variability, so this value could be very close to the actual amount of variability in the population.
Is it possible for the actual population mean to be different than all three sample means in Melinda’s data? Why or why not?
Yes; sample means can differ from population characteristics due to sampling variability.
Look at Part 2. What range of times fall within 1 MAD of the sample mean for the 5th graders?
10 minutes to 30 minutes.
What range of times fall within 1 MAD of the sample mean for the 8th graders?
30 minutes to 50 minutes.
What is the difference between the two sample means?
What would you multiply the MAD by to get a distance of 20?
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