Graphing is a fun skill to work on because it allows many opportunities for student engagement. Students love collecting data and creating line plots, bar graphs, and picture graphs.
Using Outside Time:
For line plots you can have students do jumps outside and then measure the jumps. Students can use the data to graph how many students were able to do each length.
You can have students count things they find outside such as leaves, rocks, insects, number of clouds, trees, etc…
If you’re allowed to have snacks in your classroom, its always fun to graph with food! You can use chex mix, skittle bags, m&ms, or lucky charms to graph how many of each snack was in your bag.
This is an easy way to have students collect data. They can collect and graph data based on students’ favorite:
- Specials (music, p.e., art…)
- Subject (math, reading, science…)
Ways to Incorporate Graphing All Year:
Graph pre and post-assessment scores
If you use my Guided Math curriculums (Grades 1-5), you can use the student graphs to easily graph their pre and post-assessment scores. It’s important to make sure your students understand what the purpose of a pre-assessment is so they do not get upset with themselves if they get a low score. Put emphasis on post-assessment scores.
Students love to see their progress. An easy way to do this is to do a one minute fluency drill with them each week and have them graph their progress on a fluency chart. I like to do this as part of my guided reading time once a week.
Graph the weather
In some states, this is part of science standards for certain grades. But even if it isn’t, you can easily make a class graph with the types of weather that are common in your area. With older students, you can create a temperature graph instead. (Each column could be a different temperature range…50s…60s…etc…)
Most grade levels teach some form of opinion writing. You can integrate this writing standard with your math lessons by graphing students’ opinions.
Graph lunch data
If you have to submit a lunch count each day, you can create a simple graph (choice 1, choice 2, pbj) and then have a helper graph the lunch count.
Let me help you teach graphing and line plots! I’ve got a lot of lessons here!