Call to protect great white shark


This article provides at least three opportunities for discussion in the classroom. First there is the graphical representation which includes a "broken" bar for the bottom two categories to indicate that the lengths are not directly proportional to the numbers represented. This is good practice and students should recognise it.

Second, there are opportunities to observe the different uses for numbers, a basic numeracy skill. There are at least six different uses related to weight, length, time and counting. These could be discovered by younger students. There is also the chance to calculate percentages, for example associated with the proportion of accidental deaths caused by sharks, lightning, drowning, etc.

Third, this is an example of a spectacular singular event which gains notoriety far beyond its statistical significance. When one man is killed by a shark, great attention is directed at "getting rid of sharks". When 10 people are killed in traffic accidents everyday, the events are so common, that they go virtually unnoticed. This article points out the fallacy of such non statistical reasoning.


Where to next?

Student Questions for this article
Newspaper article
Index - Related articles
Index - Data Representation
Index - Number
Main Index - Numeracy in the News