Walking the line

2nd May 2008 at 01:00
Maths - Ages 11 to 14

Ages 11 to 14

The ability to graph data correctly is important. Building a human graph is a kinaesthetic and effective approach before putting it on paper. All you need is: three long pieces of rope (x-axis, y-axis and the graph line); A4 paper for titles, labels and numbers; Blu-Tack; and the corridor or playground.

One pupil holds two pieces of rope at the origin that extend outwardly as the x and y-axes. Two pupils pace out the scale on each axis, Blu-Tacking the numbers and labels to the floor. The remaining pupils are divided into an x co-ordinate queue and a y co-ordinate queue.

The first x, y pair stands at the origin. A co-ordinate is read out; they walk along their axis to the correct value, turn and join at the specified co-ordinate. They cross hands to show x marks the spot. This continues until all co-ordinates are plotted. A third rope is used to join the points.

The success criteria and pupils' plotting skills are then used to graph data on paper.

Yvonne Davies is an Advanced Skills Teacher for science at Thurston Community College in Bury St Edmunds in Suffolk.

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