To assess prior knowledge:
- Ask the students to take out the box plots they made yesterday.
- Lead them in a discussion of how they were made. You may wish
to review the meanings of "mean," "median," and "mode." The mode is the
data point that occurs most often. The mean is the arithmetic average.
The median is the halfway point in the ordered data; one half the
observations are above it and one half are below it.
Assign the class to groups of two or three. Distribute index cards, calculators, and one copy of The Pizza Palace Activity Sheet to each group.
The Pizza Palace Activity Sheet
Tell them to design a pizza for the three of them, then to use a calculator to find its cost.
When all are ready, call on a volunteer to write the prices on
the board as one student from each group calls them out. Have the
students use their calculators to find the mean cost of the pizzas, to
identify a mode if there is one, and to generate a box plot using the
After they have had time to complete the task, ask each group
to report the mean, median, and mode that they found. Record these
calculations where all the students can see them. Then ask volunteers
to identify the high and low scores and to demonstrate their positions
on the box plot they constructed.
As a final activity, go to the Box Plotter Tool.
Box Plotter Tool
Students should select "My Data" from the pull-down menu. Students enter their group's data in the place indicated.
Ask the students to compare the box plots they did by hand with
the computer-generated box plot. Students can print out their box
plots, and you may collect them as needed.