People just love to quote statistics. But what do those numbers really mean? And how much of the real story do they tell? Statistics can be very useful. But it’s also important to know that they can be twisted to suit a particular purpose.

For example, you may hear that voter turnout in one area was higher than in another area. But you may not hear that voters in the first area have far better access to transportation to the polls. That’s an example of the story behind one particular statistic.

The next time you hear a statistic used in an argument, challenge your child to investigate the story behind it.

Middle school students are leaving childhood. They are starting to question things they had always accepted at face value. They are often skeptical. Here’s your chance to put this trait to an educational use. Through research, your budding skeptic may also be able to come up with the real circumstances behind the numbers.

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