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Grade: 3-5
Subject: Mathematics

#4335. Mystery Drink Pictograph

Mathematics, level: 3-5
Posted Tue Feb 3 16:19:22 PST 2009 by Rebekah Melby (Rebekah Melby).
United States
Materials Required: see below
Activity Time: 15-20 minutes
Concepts Taught: pictograph, bar graph, line graph, circle graph

State Standards (Texas) (3.13) The student is expected to:
(A) collect, organize, record, and display data in pictographs and bar graphs where
each picture or cell might represent more than one piece of data;
(B) interpret information from pictographs and bar graphs;


Materials: 6 small bags of M&M’s (or 1 large) , 4 cans (4 different types) of soda (or juice), paper/plastic cups, graphing paper, pencils, pocket chart/poster board.


Activity 1: Pictographs:

Preparation: Find an example of a pictograph (most math texts have a picture). Cover cans of soda with paper so the brand cannot be seen. Have paper cups to distribute (one to each student). Print, copy, and cut out symbols representing the sodas (I just printed pictures of paper cups); 2 for each child. Ready the pocket chart or poster board by labeling with a title (ours was “Favorite Sodas”) and data labels (Soda 1, Soda 2, etc).

In class: Show the example pictograph, while explaining ---


Pictographs are used to organize information into categories and to show quantity/amounts. Pictographs use symbols to illustrate the quantities in each category of data; each symbol represents a certain amount, which is explained by the key or legend. ALL PICTOGRAPHS INCLUDE A KEY OR LEGEND.

Make sure each student has his or her paper cup as well as his or her two “votes.” Explain that each child will taste and consider the 4 types of soda (labeled Soda 1, Soda 2, Soda 3, Soda 4), will choose his or her two favorite types, and place his or her two “votes” in the proper place on the pocket chart/ poster.

When the whole class has “voted,” have the students copy the graph onto their own graphing paper to record the information. Check for understanding.