Monday, May 23, 2005
Teaching Probability with Tree Diagrams (Reflection)
Making tree diagrams has been extremely difficult for most of my students. They are having trouble even knowing where to begin with the diagrams. For instance, when calculating the sample space for tossing three coins, instead of branching out from a head and tail on the first toss, they might begin with three outcomes (two heads and a tail) and add three branches to each of those (to designate three coins being tossed).
To eliminate confusion next year, I am definitely going to create tree diagrams with blank spaces (see example) for each problem they solve and just have them fill in the blanks. This seems like the proper amount of scaffolding they will need to eventually create their own.