Reflection: Discourse and Questioning What's Your Frequency? Analyzing and Creating Frequency Tables and Line Plots - Section 1: DO NOW


Before the students started working independently on the Do NOW, I wanted to hear from them to get a clear understanding of what they know and how they bring it all together.  So I decided to use a "popcorn" style of answer questions and asking quesitons to get more of the students talking about the measures of central tendency.  Here's how it worked.  I asked the students to think about the mean.  I gave them 10 seconds of think time.  Then I told them that they could start whenenver they were ready.  They were allowed to say one sentence about what they know about the mean.  Once they said their one statement, they had to "send it" to someone else even if that person did not have their hand raised.  I facilitated the conversation, but did not get involved in the discussion unless they said something completely wrong.  I encouraged students to use their sentence stems: I agree, I disagree, I want to build upon or I want to clarify.  This was a big success!  More students got to participate and as we covered all the components, I would have the last student summarize what was said.  This way they had to pay attention to the conversation.  We did this for all measures: mean, median and mode.


Here's what I heard (and wanted to hear!)

Mean:  measure of center, add up all of the data values and divide by how many values you have, most affected if there is an outlier,  and the value of the mean stands for everyone getting the same amount

Median:  measure of center, middle number when the data is arranged small to large,  you cross off in pairs from small to large, not affected by an outlier because we get rid of it right away with the crossing off, and it means that 50% of the observations are on one side and 50% on the other side.  Additionally, they said that you can only have one median so if you are left with two numbers you have to find the mean of those numbers in order to find the median.

Mode:  measure of center, occurs most often, you can have one mode, no mode or more than one mode, not affected by the outlier, and you can't use zero for a mode because zero is a numerical value.


After we spoke about the mode, I asked the students a real life question.  "When would someone in the real world want to use the mode over the other measures of center?"  Again, I was impressed with their responses.


Competing restaurants would use the mode because they may want to count #'s of customers

Television stations use the mode to see which shows are watched the most.

Apparell stores use mode to find out which brands are sold the most. 

We had some really good discussion about Sweeps week in TV.  I enjoyed their insight and they were able to apply this to their own lives all while deepen their understanding of the uses of the measures of central tendency.


  Hearing their side....
  Discourse and Questioning: Hearing their side....
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What's Your Frequency? Analyzing and Creating Frequency Tables and Line Plots

Unit 9: Statistics
Lesson 6 of 23

Objective: The students will be looking at data to create, analyze and describe frequency tables and line plots (dot plots).

Big Idea: The students will be working with frequency tables and turning them in to line plots. They will be describing the data and making observations from the tables.

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