Uno’s Garden


This is an activity based on the picture book Uno’s Garden.

Achievement Objectives
S3-1: Conduct investigations using the statistical enquiry cycle: gathering, sorting, and displaying multivariate category and whole-number data and simple time-series data to answer questions; identifying patterns and trends in context, within and
Specific Learning Outcomes
  1. Students will explore and compare the graphic representations of sequential number patterns.
  2. Students will be able to identify and explain the trends evident in a graph.
Description of Mathematics
  1. Sequential patterns of numbers are created by a repeated operation or series of operations.
  2. Relationships between and within sets of data can be illustrated in graphs.
Required Resource Materials
Data collection sheet copy master

Uno’s Garden by Graeme Base including the notes about the mathematics at the end of the book under the section titled “A Question of Balance”

Graph paper, rulers and coloured pens


Plotting Patterns
This activity is based on the picture book Uno’s Garden.

Author: Graeme Base
Illustrator: Graeme Base
Publisher: Penguin Viking (2006)
ISBN: 0-670-04191-2

A cautionary conservationist tale about how we impact on our environment. Uno arrives in the forest and is surrounded by a diversity of animals and plants. As the human population grows in one pattern it affects the other populations in other patterns.

Lesson Sequence:

  1. Prior to reading, support students with making connections to the text through discussing the idea of environmental impact.
    What do you imagine Aotearoa/New Zealand was like before people arrived here?
    What impact have people had on the environment? Negative and positive examples?
  2. Hand out the data collection copy master and ask students to record the population data within the story as you read. Students can do this individually or in pairs.
  3. Share the book with the students and draw their attention to the data on each page as the story unfolds. Ask for students to share observations about the populations. Encourage the use of mathematical terms to describe the emerging patterns and relationships.
  4. Ask the students to meet in pairs or small groups and make observations about the patterns within the data. Stress they should be looking for patterns and relationships. For example: “There is a pattern in the number of houses. They increase by ----- each time and the number of ----- increase/decrease at the same time by this much.” Make yourself familiar with the notes at the end of the book that identify the patterns evident, squares, doubling, increasing/decreasing by 1, primes etc.
  5. Bring students back together and model how to graph one of the patterns identified. For example: the plants decrease as a sequence of squares over the first half of the book and then increase by 1 up to 10 for the second half until they jump to 100. The x-axis is time (pages of the book) and the y-axis is number.
  6. Students then can work to record the patterns for each population over the course of the story on their graph. Chose a different colour for animals, plants, buildings and people.
  7. Come back together to discuss the relationships discovered and discuss the trends and predictions they can make based on what they have represented.

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