Activities to Teach Students About Median: Find the Missing Number

As a math teacher, it is important to find creative and exciting ways to teach students about different mathematical concepts. Median is one of the critical measures of central tendency used in statistics. It is defined as the central value in a set of numbers. To teach students about the median, one of the activities that teachers can use is finding the missing number.

The activity involves using a set of numbers, determining the median, and then removing one number from the set. Students are tasked with finding the missing number that will make the remaining numbers in the set have the same median as the original set.

Here are some steps to follow when teaching this activity.

Step 1: Explain the Concept of Median

Before embarking on the activity, it is essential to explain to students what the median is. Teach them to identify the middle value of a particular data set when it is arranged in ascending or descending order. It is also essential to explain how to calculate the median for sets of even and odd numbers.

Step 2: Introduce the Activity

To introduce the activity, give students a set of data, and ask them to find the median. Once they have identified the median, remove one number from the set and write the new sequence of numbers on the board. Ask the students to find the missing number that will make the median of the new set the same as the original set.

Step 3: Provide Examples

It is crucial to provide students with examples to cement their understanding of the concept. Using examples is an excellent way to show students how to find the missing number. For instance, suppose the original set was {10, 14, 18, 22, 26}. The median of this set is 18. If we remove 22 from the data set, we have {10, 14, 18, 26}. Students are then tasked with finding the missing number that will make the median of this new set 18.

Step 4: Encourage Collaboration Among Students

Encourage students to work in groups or pairs to discuss the problem and come up with solutions. Collaboration can help boost critical thinking and creativity when finding solutions.

Step 5: Review Answers

Once the students have found the missing number, it is essential to review their answers. Encourage them to share their thought processes and how they arrived at the answer. It is a great opportunity for teachers to assess skill mastery and identify any areas of difficulty.

In conclusion, the activity of finding the missing number is an exciting way to teach students about the median. It helps them understand this critical central tendency measure and how to calculate it. By incorporating this activity into your teaching, it makes learning math fun and engaging for students.

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