Fred as Educator
In 1961 Frederick Mosteller appeared on NBC’s Continental Classroom as its national television teacher of the course on probability and statistics. His perspective on this course appears in P54 and will be discussed below. But from my perspective the course was a Godsend. At that time I was a young mother of two living on a Marine Corps base (where my husband was stationed) in southern California. I had dropped out of graduate school (or stopped out, I hoped) three years earlier because I was pregnant with my first child. That is the way we did things in those days. By 1961 I had two small children, very little free time, a determination to study statistics, and Continental Classroom! One of the few times of the day that young children will leave their parents alone is before seven o’clock in the morning—hence every morning I did my calisthenics in front of the television set and learned statistics from Frederick Mosteller. Although not registered for credit for the course, I sent for the textbooks and faithfully did all the homework. I was in awe of Frederick Mosteller—as students often were of professors in those days—but in an exaggerated fashion because he was not only a professor, but a professor on television!
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