250,000 guns add up to 'welcome gift for nation'

The article is very topical given the interest in gun law reform in Australia. Whatever work is done with this article could be followed up later when more figures are produced and Queensland begins its program.

The first thing which can be done with this article is a 'spot the error' exercise. The most blatant is in the first sentence! But if students check the averages using the arithmetic mean, they will find a few minor discrepancies.

There are many ways that these data can be used as a basis for data representation. Graphs can be made to show a comparison of the number of guns turned in per state, perhaps on a backdrop of a map of Australia. The average prices paid could be displayed for comparison. A pie chart could be created to show either the relative proportions of guns returned in each state and territory or the proportions of the total amount paid. In representing data of this type it is important to discuss appropriate and inappropriate methods of display (e.g., a pie chart of average prices would be inappropriate but it is probably possible to create one on a computer package).

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