It’s every Canadians favorite favourite time of year.  That’s right Coffee drinkers, time to double-down with your double-double and roll up the rim to win.  We are going to explore some probabilities in my grade 7/8 class over the next week or two.  After reading two great blog posts from @MatthewOldridge and @mraspinall, I decided to combine two great ideas into one unit of study. Having taught probability for six years now, I have found it to be a topic that is both interesting and practical but also overlooked and underappreciated.  It is often something that is left until the end of the year and explored mainly through games or contrived simulations.  We have had hosted probability fairs before, but they have left some academics to be desired.  Another one of those great ‘June’ activities if you catch my drift ;).

The first post that got me thinking highlighted the actual odds of winning a prize from Tim’s.

Students have began to collect some experimental data from parents, friends etc.  They have also inquired/researched the odds of winning.  With the data we collect and the research that we gather, hopefully we can make a real-life connection with probabilities.  I look forward to exploring the idea of odds that are statistically zero.

The second part of this will provide a great reboot to the typical simulations that we have used in the past, ie. spinners, coins, dice yadda yadda…

Why not have students create/code their own simulations using scratch or snapcoding. We have dabbled with block coding this year and what a great way to encourage more. Probability seems to be a great platform to integrate computer science/coding into our math curriculum. What a great way to potentially enhance student understanding of the concept of experimental/theoretical probabilities with this extension.

Hopefully we can have some fun with this and I highly recommend that you check out both blogs to get you thinking about probability. We started with a simple intro writing activity tho get them thinking, here

If you would like share your Roll up Stats with us, and please do, just comment or tweet me (@hewettja).  Feel free to include your wins, loses, prizes and sizes.

(By the way, I am proud of myself for avoiding the use of a java related pun throughout this post)

Tim's Cat

2 thoughts on “Roll up the Rim to Win… probably?

  1. Pingback: Collaborative Inquiry Math @BrookeCentral | The Super Nintendo Chalmers Report

  2. Reblogged this on From Under the Teacher's Desk and commented:
    ((Sorry for the delayed posts, I have had some technical difficulties)) this post by mrhewett discusses a lesson on probability using the Tim Horton’s annual “Roll Up The Rim to Win” promotion. Tim Horton’s is a coffee/food chain in Canada and some States. Similar to McDonald’s monopoly promotion, ‘prizes’ are attached to drink cups. Some of them are big prizes but most are something like “free coffee”. This lesson can really be done using most food chain promotions. Special thanks to mrhewett for sharing!


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