Sock Probability

How you can help at home: Have your child explore probability with socks.

By Miriam Myers , GreatSchools Staff

In this math activity your child explores prediction and probability using different colored socks.

What You'll Need

Here's How to Do It

Talk with your child about probability, the chance or likelihood of a certain event occurring. Explain that probability can be expressed as a ratio of the number of specific events or outcomes to the total number of possible events or outcomes. Go over examples of probability with your child, such as the probability of a coin being tossed heads up (1/2 ). What is the probability of rolling an odd number on a die? (3/6) or (1/2).

Have your child grab 10 socks from his sock drawer, making sure they are different colors. Have your child go through each color and write down the probability of picking each sock. For example if there are three white socks the probability is 3/10 for white. Put the socks in a bag and have your child predict which color sock he will pull out. After he has chosen a sock, have him write down the color chosen and put the sock back in the bag. Have him continue this nine more times. When he is done have him compare the probability to the outcomes.