This quick overview gives a couple of ideas for having students write about data from a line graph.
In this pdf, I’ve included examples of analysis questions for two different line graphs. Both of these are for the elementary level. For each set of questions, I’ve also included a large size of the graph that you can project and/or give students as they work to answer these questions.
Remember the Success Sequence: Draw, Talk, Write. Have the students use the visual and talk about the answers – preferably in a structured way as you call out the question. Then have students write about the graph.
Fractions, fractions, fractions. For so many students, these are quite the challenge to learn. One of the first things that adults should do when students struggle with an area of the curriculum is to make sure we’ve clarified the content that students are to learn. As you know, one of the ways to do this is through content cards.
As always, please let me know if there’s anything that should be added to the card.
One of the simplest things you can do to help students think deeply about visual material is to write analysis questions for the different types of visuals you use with students. This example is for bar graphs – and I’ve included two examples to give you an idea of how these questions might look. (I’ll be adding a whole series of analysis questions for different types of visuals, so be sure to check back often and/or subscribe to this blog.)
After students talk about the information in the graphs, based on the guiding questions you provide, have them write a summary of what the graph says. You can make this a short and sweet summary that uses bullet statements or you can have students write a full paragraph. When you give students a chance to talk about the questions BEFORE having them write, they’ll do a much better job with the summary.
Use the graphs. Get students talking about the information in the graphs. Watch them develop deeper understanding because you guided them through deeper thinking of the material. And as always, don’t forget to add your own good questions. You may even want to add some here!
Our younger students learn about parallel lines in different grade levels in different states. But there is some key content that students need to know related to parallel lines. This content card provides key content. (If you see other things that need to be added, please leave a comment and I’ll update this. All of my content cards are a work in progress.) DOWNLOAD THE CONTENT CARD FOR PARALLEL. I’ve included a piece that is not in most elementary programs – and that is how to write a math sentence that shows two lines are parallel.
Remember that in curriculum development world, we still need to work on things students must be able to do with this content at the elementary school level. Do we want students to identify parallel lines in everyday things? Do we want students to distinguish between a parallel line and a perpendicular line? What about explaining what a parallel line is? What about explaining why a line that is not parallel isn’t? Do we want students to explain the difference between parallel lines and intersecting lines? These kinds of things become objectives in your curriculum.
For those of you in charge of developing curriculum, there are a couple of questions you’ll want to answer: What core content do you want at each grade level in relation to this concept? What do you want students to do with the content at each grade level? By the way, content cards are a good way to check vertical and horizontal alignment in a curriculum at the district level.
If your role is that of designing assessments, the content cards are a big plus as well. When everyone works from the same core content – and the same objectives, you support tight alignment at the classroom level – which is where alignment really happens.
When teaching students to count, there are a couple of basic tools every teacher needs. Here’s the great news: These tools cost almost nothing and are very simple to reproduce and use. DOWNLOAD MY HUNDREDS CHART and perhaps print one for each of your students. DOWNLOAD THE NUMBER CARDS and make a number line and/or use the cards in a variety of other ways.
This is a sort in which students count to answer “how many” questions with up to ten things. This is for Kindergarten and goes with my Content Cards for Counting. DOWNLOAD THIS ACTIVITY for a tool that willl help students sort pictures as well as their corresponding numbers and number words.
One of the things I do to determine the quality of a curriculum is to review the actual content the curriculum will include. This is the content card I developed for the common core’s DRAFT grade-level kindergarten standards that deal with counting. I’ve also reviewed the the corresponding standards for the State of Michigan and the Commonwealth of Virginia. See what you think! DOWNLOAD THE CONTENT CARDS.
Have you ever struggled with helping students write a good conclusion? This is a simple and powerful activity I designed to help students understand the difference. Download the pdf of the strategy, which includes directions, a template, and an answer sheet for this activity. I designed this for the elementary level, but this is easily adapted to the secondary level by using more sophisticated examples. The Hot Miss phrase is from Amy Hooper, a wonderful teacher at Axton Elementary in Virginia.