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Math Journal Sundays - Types of Graphs

It's Math Journal Sunday!  Our math journal entry this week was all about those graphs.  Depending on where we are in our unit, sometimes our journal entries introduce a topic, and sometimes they reinforce or review a topic.  This one was definitely an introduction as it was our very first day in the unit.  This entry is extremely similar to one I have in my original Interactive Math Journal (template included), but I changed the types of graphs this time.

We started out by folding our paper into thirds, then cutting flaps on the top and bottom third (4 flaps).  The back of the middle third is glued to the notebook.

For this entry we looked at double bar graphs, broken line graphs, stem and leaf plot graphs, and line plot graphs - these are the main 4 my grade 4/5s need to know.  We wrote the titles for each graph on the outside of the top flap.

When you lift those top flaps, under that we wrote definitions and uses for each specific type of graph - something for them to refer to later when thinking about the best kind of graph for a particular set of data.

And lastly, under that flap, we drew a picture of each type of graph.  This was just a quick picture or sketch to show what the graph looked like - we didn't actually use a real set of data to make the graphs for this journal entry.

And that was that for the right side (the input side) of the page.  We followed our traditional left-side of the page thinking (the output) for this entry.  With the gradual release of responsibility to the students, this time they completed the learning goal, what I already know, what I learned, and proof independently (however, I did model a response for some of my students who require it).  For the reflection section, I gave them a question to answer:  Give 3 examples of where you have seen graphs used in the real world.  As part of their homework over the weekend, I asked students to bring in examples of graphs they have found so we can start to examine them.

And that's that.  Don't forget you can click on the Math Journal Sundays link at the very beginning of the post to see all my math journal entries over the past few years.


  1. I love reading your insights into math journals and have your Math Journal packet. I teach third grade and have always felt that journalling at this level is beyond them, but I'm thinking now that we can begin math journals, following the format you use, at second semester. Most of my students will be able to handle the writing part and need to practice the deep thinking that the journals will provoke. I think I'll just start at the beginning to review all concepts. It will be a lot of work and a paradigm shift for all of us! THanks for your guidance on this.

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