If you walked down Main Street on the Pudong campus of Shanghai American School recently, you’d have seen wide-eyed elementary school students, inquisitive middle school students, and laughing high school students.
And you might not have guessed that what you’d come across was a lesson in integrated math. But it’s true! It’s called the Probability Project, and it’s when integrated math students from the high school at SAS in Pudong are tasked with applying what they’ve learned by developing games with varying statistical odds.
Integrated math at SAS is an approach that brings Algebra, Advanced Algebra, Geometry, Trigonometry, and Probability into a series of three multi-disciplinary math courses. The course approach was developed by SAS faculty in Pudong and Puxi.
As for the Probability Project? It’s in its third year in Pudong after being developed by three faculty members, including Eric Grochowski (who goes by “Ski” unless you’re feeling formal, in which case “Mr. Ski” works). “We made a point to focus on real life projects to infuse into the math topics,” explained Ski. “I mentioned how games of chance are really interesting to both grown-ups and kids. We decided it would be authentic for the students to develop and analyze their own probability games.” Thus, the Probability Project was born.
There have been some memorable games in those three years. “One game had a 400 to 1 chance of winning a three-foot tall plush bear and a grade 3 student won it within the first 10 minutes,” said Ski. “The little one was very happy with her bear, and the high school students were amazed because they fully understood the incredible odds of that outcome.”
The Probability Project continues to get tweaked every year, as the game results are synthesized and analyzed. After all, those three-foot tall bears are expensive!
IMPROVEMENT. EVERY DAY AT SAS.
Founded in 1912, Shanghai American School (SAS) is the largest and most established international school in China. In short, it's the kind of school you wish you would've attended when you were a kid. 创建于1912年，上海美国学校是中国最大的也是历史最悠久的国际学校。简而言之，如果你能回到小的时候，这会是一所你想要去的学校。
Founded in 1912, Shanghai American School (SAS) is the largest and most established international school in China. In short, it's the kind of school you wish you would've attended when you were a kid.