In this learning sequence, students have opportunities to discuss social/population issues and these discussions will serve to enrich and make meaningful the mathematics.
The focus of the activities in this learning sequence is the mathematics of handling data and presenting data in useful and meaningful ways to convey the contained messages.
Activity 1: Our classroom, generation by generation
Teachers will have to decide whether to proceed beyond the classroom and collect and analyse data about parents/carers and grandparents. It may be difficult for some students to access information about their parents/carers' and grandparents' country of birth. If this is the case proceed with the known data that is provided on Hong Kong schools.
For variation, students could ask other classes in the school to provide raw data so that comparisons can be made between classes in the school. Discuss how the data can be efficiently collected from other classes to minimise disruption.
Teachers should provide some way of collating the data collected in activities 1 and 2, for example by using a class wall chart or a class tally table with appropriate headings.
Activity 2: Classrooms in the Asia region, country of birth
If teachers find it difficult to access data for classrooms in the Asia region using known overseas contacts, use the data provided about Hong Kong schools.
Activity 3: Using census data
Students will use data samples from the Australian Bureau of Statistics website CensusAtSchool. This addresses the secondary data aspect of the content description and allows student to access data online from a large database. It contains responses from Australian students who have participated in an online census. One question relates to 'country of birth'.
It might be useful for the teacher to demonstrate the steps to access the data using a digital projector or interactive whiteboard.
At this point teachers might choose to allow their students to participate in the census.
The census data may be accessed online in a number of ways, either by choosing one of many prepared data samples of 40 students from a collection of samples, or directly from the database using samples of up to 200 students.
Provided the sample does not exceed 10% of the population selected, the sample of 200 responses can be selected from a nominated state or territory. For example, the 'population' size for Tasmania is less than 2000, so the sample size selected will have to be less than 200.
Activity 4: A final comparison
In this activity students will use secondary data, provided in the Top ten countries of birth table, which has been accessed from the website of the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. It displays the top ten countries of birth of Australian residents from the 1901 and 2006 censuses.
For a class discussion, display this information on an interactive whiteboard or by using a digital projector.