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Skew the Script


9th, 10th, 11th, 12th, AP® / College


Science, Chemistry, Biology, Mathematics

Resource Types

  • Video, 15 minutes, 21 seconds, CC, Subtitles
  • Worksheet
  • Presentation Slides
  • Lesson Plan

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - Midwest


PDF, Microsoft Word, Microsoft Powerpoint, Google Forms

Critical Values & Margins of Error

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  • This lesson applies information about sample size, critical values, standard error, and confidence intervals to analyze a study about the safety of tap water in Flint, Michigan.
  • The lesson includes a step-by-step video, guided questions, student handout, reflection form, presentation slides, teacher guide, and answer key.
Teaching Tips


  • This lesson applies statistics to address a current public health issue.
  • This is a great way to learn about how statistics is used in experimental design and the importance of large sample sizes.

Additional Prerequisites

  • This resource is the second part of a 2-part set of lessons on applying statistics to the Flint water crisis.
  • Students should have an understanding of confidence intervals and how to apply them before using this resource and should know terms like standard error, standard deviation, and z-score.
  • Teachers and students need to create a free account to access the materials.


  • Parts of the video can be used in civics classes during lessons about public policy related to health and the role regulations play in shaping the health of communities.
  • This resource includes free guides on how to use the resource in different classroom settings, including in-person, online, and hybrid settings.
  • They suggest using the video in a flipped classroom format, where students watch the lecture at home and then come to class to discuss and work through the questions.
  • This lesson could be used to supplement science classes when discussing study results, the scientific method, or when performing lab procedures that require replication, control groups, and data analysis.
Scientist Notes
Students will learn how to compute error margins and identify key values, thanks to this resource. When comparing and evaluating the accuracy of the findings from the Flint water quality report, this technique is crucial for measuring the variability in the estimating process and checking the level of confidence. It is advised to use this resource when instructing.
  • Mathematics
    • Data Reasoning and Probability (9-12)
      • HS.DR.A.1 Formulate multivariable statistical investigative questions and determine how data from samples can be collected and analyzed to provide an answer.
      • HS.DR.B.6 Distinguish and choose between surveys, observational studies, and experiments to design an appropriate data collection that answers an investigative question of interest.
      • HS.DR.C.9 Use statistics appropriate to the shape of the data distribution to compare the center and spread of two or more different data sets.
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