The Mass. Council offers a curriculum for middle school students entitled, Facing the Odds, the Mathematics of Gambling and Other Risks, by Harvard Medical School's Division on Addictions and The Massachusetts Council on Compulsive Gambling.
This curriculum aims to make mathematics more meaningful to students and more relevant to their daily lives by introducing concepts of probability and statistics through the use of gambling and media-related topics. It will also help students to develop critical thinking and number sense skills and to apply these skills to media, advertising, and gambling issues. In particular, students will learn to make decisions and choices about gambling activities based on mathematical reasoning. Contemporary research shows that gambling behavior is prevalent among youth and that a proportion of young people are experiencing problems related to gambling. This curriculum provides an opportunity for students to learn about mathematics through relevant contemporary social issues. It also has the potential to increase student interest in mathematics and concurrently to diminish the likelihood of the development of addictive behaviors.