Intro to Bivariate Data – Scatter Plots and Hula Hoops!

We started our unit on Bivariate Data today, which is basically scatter plots and 2-way frequency tables. We (my co-worker Karen and I) decided to start by having the kids plot points as homework and used this worksheet. Tws plotting points scatter plothe instructions ask for the kids to draw a line of fit and find the slope using point-slope form (probably), but we decided to have the kids just plot as homework then we’d talk about the line today.

But before we did that…we greeted the students at the door and gave them each 2 dot stickers and asked them to plot them on the graphs we had on the board. Some asked, “Anywhere?” I said, “No, read the graph.” I think some still plotted them wrong, but basically we ended up with these 2 scatter plots. The red stickers are from Karen’s class, which is just before mine, and we used the green stickers. The plots were Number of pets to Number of people in your household and Shoe size to Height. My class has taller kids! This was fun because the kids just plotted the stickers and we didn’t talk about them for a while, because we were looking at the homework.scatter plot 1 scatter plot 2We had decided to have the kids estimate the y-intercept from the graphs, then use 2 points to figure out the slope. Then they could write the equation in y=mx+b form for the homework. We each only got one line done because then we took the class outside to do the Hula-Hoop Challenge! Karen and I did this a little differently, but we each ended up with 6 (me) or 9 (Karen) data points. The task was for a number of students to hold hands and move a hula-hoop from one end of the line to the other as fast as they can, with each student stepping through the hula-hoop, without dropping hands. Some kids really wanted to and others didn’t but we had them all do it. I had 2 lines of kids, girls vs. boys and started with 5 kids, then 9, then 14 in each line. Karen had 1 line, started with 3 kids, then added more until she had her whole class of 27 in one line. I want to do that tomorrow! It was outside. It was loud. It was fun. We gathered data. Yea!

Tomorrow we will share our data and plot the points and find a line of fit for it and the other graphs on the homework, converting a race into math! I think it was a good day.

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About debboden

I teach middle school math in Thousand Oaks, California. I love my job! When I'm not teaching, or thinking about teaching, I love to ride horses, read, take Zumba classes and be with my family and friends.
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2 Responses to Intro to Bivariate Data – Scatter Plots and Hula Hoops!

  1. Karen Greenberg says:

    We had fun and tomorrow we look at our scatterplot of our hula hoop activity data… that’s the tough part! Probably easier than trying to get the boys to hold hands…

  2. Sarah Harlan says:

    Really innovative, and not like any math class I ever had as a student! Way to go! Love, Mom

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