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How can data change our worldview?

Rachel Cunliffe and Anne Patel (CensusAtSchool) showed “How data can change our worldview?” (+ why CensusAtSchool matters more than ever!)

Our students are affected by data every day and its influence is only increasing. Data (via Dollar street and CAS) has the power to challenge students to think differently about their world, rather than only being influenced by what the media tells them, or what their social media filter bubble displays. Your students have experienced the issues collecting the data in the bi-annual online census, now you have their data plus much more so let’s use it! The workshop showed how data can inform and extend your students worldview and why it is important to think critically about stories we see in data. We will look at how to develop student’s ability to ask data-based questions, understand the assumptions and limitations of data and findings and look at causes of phenomena seen in data. Participants practiced posing statistical and probability-based questions using CAS and discuss what is involved in teaching these critical statistical literacy skills. The main dispositions we need students to develop is understanding that “data is a better starting point than opinion”, and to be “skeptical rather than cynical”when using or being given data.

Now in its eighteenth year, CensusAtSchool continues to provide unique insights for our students about themselves. In their workshops participants cover a variety of examples where the data can take us by surprise, including drawing from CensusAtSchool data.

In 2018 Rachel looked at issues with the official Census and its connection to CensusAtSchool. Link to 2018 resources

In 2019 Anne asked participants who should be responsible for educating students about the national census? Link to 2019 resources

Anne and Rachel are available (by arrangement) if you feel your students would benefit from a data detective visiting your classroom. We are looking for CAS data ambassadors across the country who would be prepared to present (particularly at Primary and Intermediate level). Let us know if you are keen!

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