Jumping Into Math, Measurement & Data - Day 2

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SWBAT construct arguments and answer questions about line plots with measurement data.

Big Idea

Students create line plots and analyze data using measurement data with quarter unit fractions.

Mini-Lesson: Create Line Plots

15 minutes

Yesterday was an exciting lesson, with long jumps and measurement data collection. Today, we are going to organize this data. To warm-up, we review what a line plot looks like, where we have them in our classroom, and how we use them.  (We use line plots to track class data on reading comprehension.  These line plots are on copy paper and posted in the room.)  

The line plot used in today's lesson will be created on the whiteboard, and the students also record it on a  paper for their team to use throughout the lesson.  This quick review of line plots also helps students develop their understanding of and use of this vocabulary term. 

Students create the line plot using the data collected from the previous day's lesson, when they completed standing long jumps.  Each student has a copy of the recorded data for reference as the line plot is created.  This also gives the students a chance to compare the length of their jumps to other students.  During this time I ask the students questions, such as, "Which measurement occurred most often?"  "How many students jumped above 24 1/4 inches?"  

Once the class line plot is created, students recreate it on a piece of paper to use with their team. They will be manipulating the data, and it will be important for them to have their own line plot to use later in the lesson.  These line plots are created on a 12 x 18 piece of construction paper.  

Group Work: Create Charts

15 minutes

Working in small groups, students are given pre-made charts with different questions.  Because my students have different skills and abilities, I determined it would be necessary to give them different questions to answer about the line plot.  Teams will present these charts to the class and use the Common Core Math Practice of asking questions and analyzing the thinking of others.  These are the questions on the charts.

Third Grade Level

  • If the three highest jump levels were removed, how would the data change? 
  • If the three lowest jump levels were removed,  how would the data change? 


Fourth Grade Level

  • If three data points were added to the longest data point, how would the data change? 
  • If three data points were added to the shortest data point, how would the data change?


Fifth Grade Level

  • If three were removed from the most frequent data point were removed, how would the data change? 
  • If three data points were added to the most frequent point, how would the data change? 


It is important for each group to understand their question.  While they are all similar, these questions expose students to what they will be expected to know and consider in third, fourth, and fifth grades. The first two questions are considerations for third grade, the middle two questions are expectations for fourth grade, and the final two questions are from fifth grade.  It requires them to reorder the the data by adding and removing data points to their line plot.  Having the line plot on paper along with chips is helpful for students to physically manipulate the data. 


35 minutes

Students respond only to the question on their chart, and present their question/chart to the class. I'm looking for their interpretation of the question, how they made changes to the data, and their clear explanation of their results. When the students are given a specific question to answer different from the rest of the class, I have the opportunity assess their understanding and really consider if students progress with this skill.  

 During the presentations, the students are prepared to take questions from other students, and from me about their conclusions.  Their charts can include:

  • a new diagram of the line plot and a written explanation, or 
  • recording where the difference in the line plot occurs through demonstration on the class line plot (whiteboard plot)
  • how they constructed their arguments and reasoning for their specific question


For example, the students working with the questions regarding the adding to the frequency, the students need to be able to understand this term, and then decide which one is next in frequency.  The students are looking are variables in data, and moving data points in terms of the frequency or mode.  The emphasis in the students' presentations is on illustrating their arguments clearly enough for the class to analyze and critique.