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It’s lunchtime and Jackson is looking forward to running around. Jackson made a quick survey of the friends he sits with while eating lunch to find out who wanted to play a game of tag with him. Jerry, Hemi and Tony were keen to join in. Daniel and Leo said they wanted to sit and play with their latest computer game. Harrison wanted to stand around and talk to some other friends. Based on his quick survey 4 out 7 (57%) of his group wanted to run around and play tag.

Jackson wonders whether 57% of New Zealand students ran around at lunchtime. Harrison thinks that Jackson’s quick survey is flawed if he wants information on all NZ students.

What proportion of all NZ students do each of the different activities at lunchtime?

This activity explores the following key ideas:

• Discuss some techniques for sampling
• Define population, sample, random sample, representative sample, distribution of a sample, population distribution
• Comparison of distribution of samples with population distribution

Resources:

Achievement Objectives

• Level 7
• S7-2Make inferences from surveys and experiments
• C recognising the effect of sample size on the variability of an estimate