This is an activity based on the picture book Lemonade for Sale
- Students will be able to create possible explanations for variance in data displays.
- Students will be able to compare and evaluate interpretations about the data within a simple display.
- Statements about a data display must be supported by evidence.
- Data displays represent the numbers and categories. Interpretations are the story behind the numbers.
Lemonade for Sale Bar Graphs (copymaster)
So you say
This activity is based on the picture book: Lemonade for Sale
Author: Stuart J. Murphy
Illustrator: Tricia Tusa
Publisher: Harper Collins (1998)
A group of children decide to fundraise to repair their clubhouse by setting up a lemonade stall. They keep track of their sales over a week using a bar graph and use the data to make decisions and adjust their business plan.
- Prior to reading, discuss the students’ experience of operating and buying from stalls. Make connections with experience of markets, galas, and garage sales. Warm up with some multiplication stories related to selling things and totals.
For example: The sausages are $2 each and we sell 55. How much do we make?
- Share the story with your students. Create a bar graph as you read so everyone can see the story represented in a diagrammatic way. Once finished reading, review the graph with the book closed and see if the students can retell the story with the graph as their memory prompt.
- Make copies of the graphs in the copymaster. Break students into small groups and ask them to interpret a graph of someone’s lemonade sales. They are to agree on 2 or 3 statements about what the graph may show. Focus on creating a story that may be behind the graph. That is, what are possible answers for a “Why?” question. Ask students not to just create declarative statements such as: “They sold more on Wednesday”, but interpretative statements such as “The weekend was probably raining and cold because the sales slumped. See they were only half as much.” Students record their statements.
- Groups then swap their graphs and statements and the other group evaluates the statements. Is it a possible explanation to a “Why?” question? Is it supported by evidence?
- On another day, the same graphs can be used for different contexts. Another activity would be to use multiple copies of one graph and ask everyone to develop a story to explain the data and ask students to vote for the most exciting or creative possible story behind the numbers.