Graphing our Favorite Ice Cream

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SWBAT collect data and represent that data in a pictograph .

Big Idea

Students can collect and represent data with a unique scale.


10 minutes

The work you guys are doing with your pictographs has been incredible. I’ve especially loved seeing people develop their own scales to show their data. Who can tell me what is different about a pictograph? What does a picture represent? How can you tell what the pictures mean?

It's been very interesting to see how students develop their own scales. Instead of giving them a standard scale, I think it gives students more ownership over their work to develop their own. Some students create scales that can be easily used and interpreted, and others create unreasonable scales (ie: 1 picture represents 10 things but their data set is numbers like 1, 3 4, 6 etc).  

We watch a quick video about pictographs before we begin our work for today.

Guided Practice

10 minutes

I was thinking this morning about what all of our favorite colors because I want to add the data to our graphing wall.

I call on a few students and write their names under their favorite color. I am writing names instead of tallying so that I the option when I represent my data, I can break it down by boys and girls or just by total number that likes each color.


30 minutes

Now I love ice cream even more than I love colors, so today I’m going to need your help polling our class to find out about our favorite flavors of ice cream. You can use your pictograph to show how many people like each flavor or you may break it apart and show how many boys like one flavor vs. girls (MP4).

Students will walk around the room and poll their classmates on their favorite types of ice cream. Instead of giving students a data set, I want them to understand the process of collecting the data that they are going to represent. I believe this gives them more ownership over their work.

After students have polled the classroom they will return to their seats to create a pictograph to represent their data set. Students must ensure the key or scale they create can be used to represent the data and is not too large or small (MP6).


5 minutes

Who notices something about their scale today?

How did you resolve your problem?

There are important topics to be covered in this discussion, because the learning extends beyond the actual data represented in the pictograph. The learning has a great deal to do with the model itself. By having students determine their own scale, they learned the importance of choosing a reasonable scale. I speak more about this in my reflection.