In this lesson, your students will learn how to summarize a set of data using the mean and the mean absolute deviation (MAD). Upon completion of this lesson, your students will be able to recognize the mean as a measure of center and the mean absolute deviation (MAD) as a measure of spread and will be able to calculate each of these measures. Additionally, your students will be introduced to considerations in choosing measures of center and spread for a particular set of data.
This lesson includes detailed instructional suggestions that can easily be adapted to your students’ needs, a student assignment, and answer key. You can use this lesson to introduce the mean and mean absolute deviation to students in the middle grades (grades 6 – 9).