A second-grade teacher challenges the raise-your-hand-to-speak tradition and enables a classroom community of student-driven conversations that share both mathematical understandings and misunderstandings.
Lisa A. Brooks and Juli K. Dixon
How Long Can You Stand on One Foot? is a classic problem that has variations in a range of mathematics and physical education curricula. This problem allows students to go through the statistical investigation PCAI process (posing a question, collecting data, analyzing data, and then interpreting data).
Sue McMillen and Beth McMillen
Connecting stories to qualitative coordinate graphs has been suggested as an effective instructional strategy (Blubaugh and Emmons 1999; Maus 2005; NCTM 2000). Even students who are able to create bar graphs may struggle to correctly interpret them. Giving children opportunities to work with qualitative graphs can help them develop the skills to interpret, describe, and compare information from a graph even without the availability of numeric labels. This investigation addresses the Data Analysis and Probability Standard (NCTM 2000) and explores the value of connecting stories with qualitative bar graph instruction, which too often focuses on only counting, tallying, and creating bar graphs.
Lynn G. Patterson and Kadie L. Patterson
An engaging activity analyzing the average age of U.S. presidents not only integrates history and mathematics but also examines measures of central tendency and its appropriate uses.
Rick A. Hudson
Innovative, technology-enhanced tasks can help students construct robust understandings of the mean.
S. Asli Özgün-Koca and Thomas G. Edwards
A box plot activity is driven by a TI-Nspire calculator.
Lyn D. English
Three core components in developing children's understanding and appreciation of data—establish a context, pose and answer statistical questions, represent and interpret data—lay the foundation for the fourth component: use data to enhance existing context.
Lyn D. English
Help first-grade students learn to competently generate, test, revise, and represent data before being formally taught to do so.
Kimberly Sipes Hartweg
Building a rod raft allows students to make mathematical connections among a model, a table, a formula, and a graph.
The Snapshots section of USA Today offers quick pictures of intriguing data collected for a specific question. A variety of subject matter is available online at http://www.usatoday.com/news/snapshot.htm, and the graphics change frequently. To use this month's activities, first visit the site to review the current topics and choose what is best for your class. If you do not have class access to the Internet, just download a couple of data snapshots, print them for examples for your class, and let students start mining. If an appropriate fit is not available, adapt or create your own. The focus of the following generic problems and activities allows students to collect their own data, transform problems, and process data in meaningful ways.