About the Apps
If you are searching for a quality application to teach your middle schooler statistics and probability, chances are you won't really know where to begin in the App Store.
Statistics does not have to be hard, so by selecting pleasant, interesting, and graphically impressive teaching apps, the student just might just get interested in exploring some of the more advanced topics.
Apps that teach those who are not yet in high school how to collect, interpret and measure data are pretty hit and miss. These five all hit the mark for reasons I explain below.
Khan Academy has a robust video playlist of Math subjects, and more importantly, the Statistics and Probability tutorials are well-paced and use effective examples. This app doesn’t do much more than Khan Academy’s YouTube channel, but your student will appreciate having all the video help in one place.
The next app to try-out is Calculator: Statistics, which changes from a regular calculator into a statistics calculator simply by turning your mobile device 90 degrees, left or right. The student should orient the device so that two columns of strange-looking blue buttons appear. Then press a number 0 - 9 and then press the "Add" button. That action begins the construction of a number series in the light-colored column to the left.
This may be the first time the student has had to invent a series of numbers. That's a good thing. Now these blue keys will analyze the number series, and begin to tell your student information about the Geographic Means (GM), Arithmetic Means (AR), the Sum of the series, etc. Allow for a long time of experimentation finding out how different the statistics are for new and creative number series.
Probability Pro is a text book reference-type application that is very professional and somewhat advanced in certain areas. The two menu options that need to be explored are: "Venn Diagrams" and "Balls in Urn". These are excellent stepping stones to the next app, Stats Pad LE.
Stats Pad has at least two menu options worth exploring: Sample Size and Distributions (use the Normal Distribution). These options provide a colorful, interactive exercise in those fundamental areas. Caution: the other menu options are much too advanced for middle school, but may prove interesting to the inquisitive mind.
Statistics Visualizer has been included in the group for those students with iPads that would like to be intrigued with the beautiful retinal displays that are the result of all type of statistical analysis.
Comments & Suggestions Have a suggestion for an educational app for this category you think we should feature? Let us know.
How are apps scored?
Apps are scored using a proprietary evaluation rubric to judge Educational Content, Kid Appeal, Assessment, Features and Design, Value, and Safety and Privacy.