Education Technology

Gambler's Fallacy: Lucky Streaks and Slumps

Published on 06/09/2008

Activity Overview

In this activity, students determine the probability of independent and compound events. They design simulations and collect data to explore streaking behavior.

Before the Activity

Install the Probability Simulation Application on the calculator using one of these two methods:

  • TI Connect™, a TI Connectivity Cable, and the Unit-to-Unit Link Cable
  • TI-Navigator™ "send to class" feature
  • See the attached PDF file for detailed instructions for this activity
  • Print pages 97 - 108 from the attached PDF file for your class

During the Activity

Distribute the pages to your class.

Follow the Activity procedures:

  • Distribute the worksheet to students
  • Record responses to the questions
  • Use the Probability Simulation application to simulate tossing a coin 100 times
  • Record any occurrence of streaks of three
  • Note the outcome of the next toss if it is the same as that of the previous three tosses
  • Record the class results of the number of streaks of three
  • Explore how the outcome of one coin toss is independent of previous outcomes
  • After the Activity

    Students will complete Student Data Collection and Analysis Sheet.

    Review student results:

  • As a class, discuss questions that appeared to be more challenging
  • Re-teach concepts as necessary