Instructional Shift 6: Build from graphs, charts, and tables.

Chapter 7: Milking the Data




What should we see in an effective mathematics classroom?

-An abundance of problems drawn from the data presented in tables, charts, and graphs

  • As a team, examine the curriculum to identify appropriate times to have students do data collection activities, such as distance vs. time labs, ratio comparisons, gathering survey data, etc.
  • Consult with colleagues from other content areas to discuss what data students are studying in their other classes. Use this opportunity to develop an interdisciplinary lesson that emphasizes mathematics across other disciplines.
  • Develop a list of web resources for students to collect authentic data that can be analyzed. Some examples may include Olympic gold medal times, gas prices each month, population data, temperature range by region, etc.

-Opportunities for students to make conjectures and draw conclusions from data presented in tables, charts, and graphs

  • Facilitate a team sharing session focused on data that students examine in the math classroom. Have team members bring samples of data, as well as student work. Have the team develop key questions to ask as students examine tables, charts, and graphs.
  • Provide data to students without the label/descriptions and have groups make conjectures about what the context for the data could be.

-Frequent conversion, with and without technology, of data in tables and charts into various types of graphs, with discussions of their advantages, disadvantages, and appropriateness

  • Have students complete a jigsaw activity in which each "expert group" is assigned a graph type to research purpose, advantages and disadvantages. Students are then regrouped so that each member must teach their classmates about their assigned graph type.