Dot Plots, Box Plots, and Histograms! (Day 2 of 2)

2 teachers like this lesson
Print Lesson


SWBAT analyze Dot Plots, Histograms, Cumulative Frequency Histograms, and Box Plots to make decisions about data and graphs.

Big Idea

To choose the best graph based from the data and the known characteristics of each type of graph.

Partner Activity

25 minutes

In the Partner Activity, I provide students with a problem about money in an ATM.  The main purpose of this activity is to know the difference between a Relative Frequency Histogram and a Cumulative Frequency Histogram.  

I also ask a few questions that require the students to know how to read and interpret the data in a histogram.  In the Cumulative Frequency Histogram, students should understand that the difference between the heights of the bars represents how much has been added to the next bar since the data is accumulating.

I demonstrate reviewing how to interpret the data in a histogram with students in the video below.

Calculator Activity

15 minutes

After the Partner Activity, I hand each student a Calculator Activity.  I do not provide context for the two calculator problems on this activity.  Instead of context, I want students to focus on the procedures of the calculator to create Dot Plots, Box Plots, and Histograms.  

In the first problem, I demonstrate how to create a Dot Plot, Box Plot, and Histogram on the TI-Nspire Cx. I model the calculator on the screen as students work the same problem on their calculator.  I encourage table Partners to help each other through this process.

I then assign students to create a Dot Plot, Box Plot, and Histogram on their own using the second set of data given on the Calculator Activity.  Students are to show me as they complete each graph, so that I can check their name off on a spreadsheet.  This quick formative assessment, allows me to know that each student can create the graph on the calculator.

I demonstrate creating a Dot Plot, Box Plot, and Histogram on the TI-Nspire Cx in the video below.


Exit Slip

10 minutes

At the end of this lesson, I provide students an Exit Slip.  I use it to assess each students ability to identify which is the best graph for a given scenario.  The first three questions of the Exit Slip are from the following website:

Students are to identify the best possible graph for each scenario.  I allow students about five minutes to make their individual selections, and then we discuss the scenarios as a class before they leave.  

In our discussion of the six different scenarios, we selected the following graphs for each scenario:

1.  Box Plot in order to highlight the range of salaries in the middle 50%of the sample

2.  Dot Plot because it was categorical data

3.  Histogram to show the ranges of thickness of ice in intervals

4.  Box Plot to show a summary with Parallel Box Plots to compare the snow at the two resorts

5.  Histogram because 200 is a large number of participants, and it shows more detail of actual hours of TV watched in a week than a summary using a Box Plot.

6.  Dot Plot because the data was categorical again.

At the end of the activity, I remind students that a Dot Plot may be used for numerical data as well, but it needs to be a small data set.