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The game of pig


This activity introduces students to the game of Pig and to the study of probability. Students develop, test, and compare strategies for playing the game as they begin to consider the central problem of the unit.


Students will collect data about rolling a die as part of playing the game of Pig. After some experience with the game, they will be able to articulate that a strategy is a complete plan of action intended to reach a particular goal.


Students are introduced to the game of Pig.

Approximate time

35 minutes

Classroom organization

Groups of 4, then pairs, followed by whole-class discussion



Doing the activity

After students have read The Game of Pig and, in particular, “Your Assignment,” ask a few students to demonstrate how to play the game and how to keep score. Play a few turns as a class to clarify the rules. Be sure students understand the distinction between a single roll of the die and a turn . Each student should keep a record of the single rolls and the score for each turn. These records will allow students to review how the game progressed and to analyze the outcome of each turn.

After students play several turns in groups of four, have them play a game or two in pairs (as time permits) and experiment with playing strategies.

Discussing and debriefing the activity

Ask students to discuss some of the playing strategies they used. A basic strategy defines, for a given turn, when to roll again to try to earn more points and when to stop rolling to not risk losing the points already earned that turn. You might ask each group to post at least one of their strategies. When duplicate strategies appear, request alternate strategies.

After posing the Key Questions, emphasize that in mathematics a strategy is a complete plan of action intended to reach a particular goal. A strategy for playing Pig must tell whether or not to roll again in every circumstance in which there is a choice.

Key questions

What do you think a strategy is?

How do you use strategies in your daily life?

What were some high scores for individual turns?

How did you decide whether to roll again or to stop?

What do we mean by the “best” strategy?

How did your strategy change as you played Pig and understood the game better?

Does this group’s strategy seem complete and clear?

How can we compare different strategies?

How might you measure whether one strategy is any better than another?

Can another group test your strategy?

Questions & Answers

what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
yes that's correct
I think
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
How we are making nano material?
what is a peer
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
What is STMs full form?
scanning tunneling microscope
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
sciencedirect big data base
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, The game of pig. OpenStax CNX. Nov 19, 2007 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10488/1.2
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