I had my elementary statistics students recall the movie Groundhog Day as part of their introduction to the concept of sampling distributions. I gave them my version. Each day Bill Murray would get up and take a sample, calculate the mean, add the new data point to a frequency table and then go to sleep. After a while, many many days, the normal distribution of the sample mean would emerge. Understanding sampling distributions is difficult for students. The reference to Groundhog Day may have helped a few of them.
Speaking of Groundhog Day, this weekend I had a sudden longing to be Bill Murray. I found this site with 350 free online college courses – so many interesting topics and great professors. I clicked on a lecture in Benedict Gross’s abstract algebra class and lost myself for an hour. There is not enough time in the course of one human lifespan to study all the interesting stuff that the universe has thrown our way. Why did Bill ever come back to the real world?