Improbability of Evolution (lesson plan)
Notes: This lesson was taught in a school system having a policy which explicitly stating that “Creation Science shall not be taught”. Only the mathematical criticisms of evolution are dealt with. There are other areas that clearly expose the fallacies, frauds, and forgeries of evolutionism.
This lesson is designed to be taught during the last nine weeks grading period. By then all preliminary skills have been covered and the teacher is well acquainted with the students. Also, the lesson provides an opportunity for some fun and even an outdoor activity if the Cross Content Connection is undertaken.
GRADE LEVEL: 7-8th Grade Mathematics (The lesson can be easily simplified for grades 4-6 and more demanding expectations (giving a test or assigning a report, for example)or introduction of higher level skills (such as logarithms)can be instituted to make it suitable for higher grades.
GOALS: Teacher: Teach mathematics as the “Language of Science” through Inquiry and Discovery. Student: Realize that objective science and pure mathematics demonstartes beyond the shawdow of a doubt that evolution is impossible.
- Place Value (See Preliminary Lessons)
- Exponents (including negative exponents)
- Scientific Notation
- Geometric (exponential) Sequences
Probability (This is a chapter in a typical mathematics textbook and this lesson is a culmination of that chapter. It will include such skills as Independent and Dependent Events, Compound Events, Fundamental Counting Principle, Permutations, and Combinations.)
DURATION: One (very full) 50-minute class period. Two periods would make a more leisurely pace
1. Students will comprehend that the science of mathematics proves that life could not have developed by natural (evolutionary) means.
2. Students will determine that the only scientific alternative to evolution is Intelligent Design.
1. Appropriate currently used science textbooks with tags on pages where origins and relative evolution concepts are covered
2. Quotations (preferably on overhead transparencies or Power Point slides) See below.
3. Small container of sand containing one unique grain
4. Photos and facts about the Sahara Desert
5. Book Of Pandas and People (Davis and Kenyon. Haughton Publishing. 1993)
6. Container of Scrabble letters. Scrabble letters consist of the following: A=9, B=2, C=2, D=4, E=12, F=2, G=3, H=2, I=9, J=1, K=1, L=4, M=2, N=6, O=8, P=2, Q=1, R=6, S=4, T=6, U=4, V=2, W=2, X=1, Y=2, and Z=1.
7. Rubik Cube
8. Video containing the following video excerpts:
a. Richard Dawkins’ comments in “From a Frog to a Prince” (Keziah Productions)
b. Dean Kenyon expressing his doubts and the Scrabble letters segment from “Unlocking the Mystery of Life” (Illustra Media) I make a single copy of the two segments.
Both videos are available from:
Institute for Creation Research
Santee, CA 92071
1. Review large numbers, scientific notation, and probability.
2. Prior to the unit on Probability the students are offered a reward (extra credit) if they bring in an example of odds or probability. This material is used to teach the main lesson. Some examples submitted previously by students are (chances to win) Pepsi (1 in 3), Powerade (1 in 6), Kit Kat (1 in 10), Mountain Dew (1 in 12), Bubble Yum (1 in 2400), M & Ms (1 in 258, 326), Cheez-Its ( 1 in 321,000), Lunchables (1 in 383,333), Nestle Crunch (1 in 536,857), Coke (1 in 11, 892,248), Skittles (1 in 13,634,678), Pepsi (1 in 27,500,000), and Power Ball (1 in 120,526,770). These consist of wrappers mounted for display and an ordered list in fraction form written on the board or displayed by a projector.
3. List (on the board or projected slide) the results of the class search for examples of odds/probability. At this time an explanation of the difference between odds and probability (depending on student ability) is warranted.
4. Discuss the scientific method (use the school’s science book definition). Emphasize that evolutionists have failed to follow the scientific method. Middle school teachers will see a cross-content teaching opportunity here.
5. Discuss the definition(s) of evolution. Show excerpts from science textbooks currently used in your school system.
6. Introduce Richard Dawkins and read his quote (#1 below). Mention that he will be seen in the upcoming video.
7. Show the video.
8. Discuss the quotes (below) about sand (#2) with the visual aide, Rubik Cube (#3) with the visual aide, and amoeba (#4 below).
9. Discuss the book, Of Pandas and People.
10. Review and discuss what was covered. Discuss quotes 5 through 9 below. Use the Scrabble visual aide and challenge the students to try to make a specific sentence by spilling the tiles randomly.
FOLLOW-UP MATH LESSON:
Circle graphs: Assuming ratio and proportion skills have already been covered this would be a good time to present a lesson on “Making Circle Graphs”. There are several national polls that show the majority of Americans do not believe in evolutionism. This data could be used to construct a circle graph. Also, class or school wide polls could be conducted to obtain data more closely tied to the students.
There is poll data from the Associated Press, ABC and NBC News, Channel One, biology teacher groups, George Magazine, and various individual states. Zogby has done one and Gallup has done several (here and here). The evolutionist “People for the American Way” tried to slant a poll. See here.
1. A review of Place Value with concrete examples using centimeter cubes: units (1), rods (10), flats (100), and blocks (1000). A meter stick can be used to describe how the model would be extended to one hundred million in relation to the room and school building. Make sure students have a firm understanding of place names through trillions and a familiarity of the period grouping method through a Centillion. At this time it is appropriate to discuss a Googol and Googolplex.
2. Scientific Notation may be taught at this time.
3. As a supplement to the textbook the following are excellent sources to demonstrate large numbers and exponential growth:
a. Demonstration of the concept of time needed to count to various levels by counting non-stop 24-hour days and 7 days a week (Million=11.6 days; billion=32 years; trillion=32,000 years).
b. Discussion of grains of salt. Use a pinch of salt contained in a clear packet. See “A Feel for Big Numbers with Grains of Salt” at here
c. Present visuals of a quintillion. See here
4. Students are challenged to see if they can make a million tally marks.
Even though students have been exposed to concepts such as the length of time to count to a million--few really grasp how large a million actually is. I offer them a grade of an “A” for the final grade of the year if they can write to a million. I also tell them that if they can make a million tally marks they will receive an “A” grade for the grading period of 9 weeks. This is used as a decoy to make the offer seem attainable.
A structure is mandated for this. Groups of 5 are not used. This could be acceptable, but it is not my preference to use that format. Marks may not be in long lines (i. e. The marks much be individual tallies limited to the spaces of a sheet of notebook paper. Each page must have a total and sub-total at the top. Of course, copy machines are prohibited.
As days pass a lot of learning is accomplished and students begin to realize what an immense task they have undertaken. At that point they can be spurred on by telling them they can combine the efforts of friends. I have allowed entire classes to try. No individual or group ever made it to a million tallies. The best any of my students achieved was 270,000 for an individual and 625,000 for a group of several kids. Students will negotiate for the use of a computer. I allow this, but reduce the reward considerably (only extra points) because they will accomplish the task using a computer. It is interesting to compare the font size and corresponding page totals of individual students.
Also, this is where, depending on student ability, other related items can be covered such as a Mole, Graham’s Number, and the Moser.
Some sources of information about large numbers:
- “Big Number names” here
- “Large Numbers” here
- “Visualizing Numbers” here
- “A Dot For Every Second of the Day” here
- “Large Number” here
Also, searching the internet for the related terms will bring up substantial supplemental material and ideas for learning excursions and more in depth study. Some examples of search words are: large numbers, orders of magnitude, paper folds, roulette, gambling, typing monkeys, probability, and powers of ten.
QUOTATIONS: (Only Coppedge and Mastropaolo can be labeled as creationists below.)
1. Generating a molecule such as hemoglobin by simple sieving would require luck that would be “unthinkable”. The chance against this happening is a “staggeringly large number” (1 followed by 190 zeros). Richard Dawkins, The Blind Watchmaker (New York, NY: W. W. Norton & Co., 1986), p. 44-45. (Of course Dawkins goes on to explain away, using only “just so” stories, this astonishing fact.)
2. “Imagine that someone hid a grain of sand, marked with a tiny X, somewhere in the Sahara Desert. After wandering blindfolded for several years in the desert you reach down, pick up a grain of sand, take off your blindfold, and find it has a tiny X. Suspicious, you give the grain of sand to someone to hide again, again you wander blindfolded into the desert, bend down, and the grain you pick up has a tiny X. A third time you repeat this action and a third time you find the marked grain. The odds of finding that marked grain of sand in the Sahara Desert three times in a row are about the same as finding one new functional protein structure.” Michael J. Behe, “Experimental Support for Regarding Functional Classes of Proteins to Be Highly Isolated from Each Other” here
3. “Imagine 10^50 blind persons each with a scrambled Rubik cube, and try to conceive of the chance of them all simultaneously arriving at the solved form. You then have the chance of arriving by random shuffling of just one of the many biopolymers on which life depends. The notion that not only biopolymers but the operating programme of a living cell could be arrived at by chance in a primordial soup here on the Earth is evidently nonsense of a high order.” Fred Hoyle, “The Big Bang in Astronomy”, New Scientist, Vol. 92, No. 1280 (1981): p.527
4. An amoeba traveling across the universe (speculated to be 30 billion light years) at the rate of one inch per year would take 10^28 years to make it across. The amoeba could carry one atom per trip (returning for another each time) until it carries all the atoms of the universe (5 x 10^78 atoms) in about 10^107 years. The number of years it would take one protein to form by chance is 10^171. So the amoeba could carry 10^64 universes before 10^171 years pass! James F. Coppedge, Evolution: Possible or Impossible? (Northridge, CA: Probability Research in Molecular Biology, 1993), p. 119-120.
5. “Its (evolution’s) probability is more than a zillion (1 followed by 4,000,000 zeros)to less than 1 against it.” Joseph Mastropaolo, The Rise and Fall of Evolution (Huntington Beach, CA, Self Published, 2003), p. 127. Also see: here
6. “The origin of life by chance in a primeval soup is impossible in improbability in the same way that a perpetual motion machine is impossible in probability.” Hubert P. Yockey, Information Theory and Molecular Biology (Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1992), p. 257
7. “The likelihood of the spontaneous formation of life from inanimate matter is one to a number with 40,000 noughts after it…It is enough to bury Darwin and the whole theory of evolution. There was no primeval soup, neither on this planet nor on any other, and if the beginnings of life were not random, they must therefore have been the product of purposeful intelligence.” Fred Hoyle and Chandra Wickramasinghe, Evolution From Space (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1984), p. 176.
8. An honest skeptic did the math and concluded. “Any such natural, or chance, sudden species-origin, is by this unfulfillable requirement rendered not merely improbable but impossible”. Alexander Mebane, Darwin’s Creation Myth (Glen Arm, MD: Sourcebook Project, 1994), p. 15.
9. “It is truth very certain that, when it is not in our power to determine what is true, we ought to follow what is most probable.”—Descartes, Rene (In Darrel Huff and Irving Geis, How to Take a Chance (New York: W. W. Norton & Co., 1959), p. 7.
CROSS CONTENT CONNECTIONS: Social Studies: Research and report about the controversy surrounding the subject of origins. A related issue would be the persecution suffered by Dr. Dean H. Kenyon and other scientists who expose evolutionism weaknesses (demotions, loss of job, and/or ridicule). Also, a study could be done about evolution is indirectly taught via a Social Studies program.
English: Vocabulary words for spelling tests. Edit the Social Studies reports on the controversy. Study Rudyard Kipling's "Just So Stories such as "How The Rhinoceros Got His Skin" and then make up stories about how specific animals evolved. Compare these to actual accounts proposed by evolutionists.
Art: Sketches of DNA and protein molecules. Project on artist renditions of fossil discoveries and the series of figures purporting to show the development of man.
Science: Other than the obvious correlation with the science text coverage of evolution, a natural correlation of this lesson is the study of immense distances between bodies in our solar system. This could be a team effort with the science teacher.
Conclude such a lesson with an outdoor activity to scale the universe using a combination of “How Big is the Universe?” (here), “The Schoolyard Solar System” (here), and “How Big is the Solar System?” (here) followed by viewing the video “Journey to the Stars” which is a ten minute segment on a video entitled “The Clown Faced Carpenter”. (Moody Press, Chicago, IL).
After viewing the video discuss quote #4 from above.
Some sources of information on the Solar System:
- “Scale Model of the Solar System” here
- “A Sense of Scale” here
- “Toilet Paper Solar System” here
- “A Question of Scale” here
- “The Thousand-Year Model or The Earth as a Peppercorn” here
- “Scaling the Universe to Your Desktop” here
1. “Probability of Entering the Creationist Zone by Chance” here
2. “Cheating With Chance” here
3. “A Mathematical Proof of Intelligent Design in Nature” here
4. “Evolution Disproved” here
5. “Anything Can Happen?” here
6. “Chemical Absurdities” here
7. “Problems With Dawkins’ Weasel” here
8. Explanation of calculating Lottery odds from your state Lottery headquarters.
9. The Math Forum here
10. William A. Dembski, The Design Inference: Eliminating Chance Through Small Probabilities (Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press, 1998).
11. Lee Spetner Not By Chance: Shattering the Modern Theory of Evolution (Brooklyn, NY: Judaica Press, Inc., 1998)
12. Some pro-evolution arguments:
a. “A Memorable Misunderstanding” here
b. “Lies, Damned Lies, Statistics, and Probability of Abiogenesis Calculations” here
c. “Irreducible Contradiction” here
d. “Borel’s Law and the Origin of Many Creationist Probability Assertions” here