Freakonomics Movie Worksheet


Directions:  Answer the following questions based on the film. The questions are listed in the order they appear in the movie. Your answers need to be complete sentences. Each answer must be at least 2 sentences to receive credit.

1.      When real estate agents sell their own homes do they make more or less than when they sell clients homes? Why is that? (2-3 full sentences)





2.      What is “causality”? (2-3 full sentences)






3.      What happened to the child that the mother inadvertently named “Temptress”? (2-3 full sentences)






4.      What did Dr. Roland Fryer determine to be the cause of Temptress’s bad behaviors? (2-3 full sentences)






5.      What was the conclusion of the experiment using identical resumes using both Black and White names? (2-3 full sentences)






6.      What might happen if you give a girl a name like Bobbi or Barbie? (2-3 full sentences)






7.      What happened to Robert Lane’s sons Winner and Loser? (2-3 full sentences)






8.      Why were the teachers in Chicago cheating for their students? (2-3 full sentences)







9.      What did the instances of cheating among Sumo wrestlers and the teachers in Chicago have in common? (2-3 full sentences)







10.  In Sumo wrestling, why is a Sumo wrestler with a 7/7 record more apt to cheat? How often do 7/7 Sumo wrestlers win?  (2-3 full sentences)





11.  What happened to the two whistle-blowers* who exposed cheating in Professional Sumo wrestling? (*Person who tells the public/authority figure of dishonesty/illegal activities in government, organizations, or companies.) (2-3 full sentences)






12.  Why are the Japanese people really not that interested in exposing the Sumo scandal? (2-3 full sentences)






13.  Why will the New York times not use the word “torture” when Americans are torturing people but have no problems using this word to describe the actions of the Chinese? (2-3 full sentences)






14.  What did early Polio researchers think might have caused Polio and why? What was the matter with this? (2-3 full sentences)







15.  As the 1980’s came to a close, what did most people think would happen to the crime rate of the United States? Why? (2-3 full sentences)






16.  Why did Police Forces say that the crime rate went down in the 1990’s? (2-3 full sentences)







17.  What surprising reason does economist Steven Levitt put forward as the real reason that crime rates went down in the 1990’s? What does he use to support this idea? (2-3 full sentences)







18.  What did Steven Levitt learn about incentives when he tried to potty train his daughter? (2-3 full sentences)







19.  What does Levitt say not graduating from high school is like in a modern economy? Why do kids not really consider this? (2-3 full sentences)







20.  In the experiment to get 9th graders to succeed in Chicago, how much money did they pay each kid monthly if they met their academic standards? What did Kevin’s mom offer to do if her son could meet these standards?  (2-3 full sentences)







21.  Did Kevin meet his academic standards the first month? Does he seem that concerned over this? (2-3 full sentences)







22.  When they go over the data for the Chicago pay-for-performance project, which kids did it affect and which kids did it not? (2-3 full sentences)







23.  Why does Kevin say that the money isn’t motivating him? (2-3 full sentences)







24.  What were the final results of the program at the end of the semester? How many more kids did they get to pass? Do you think the results would have been different if more money would have been used? (2-3 full sentences)