Data & Graphs - Mentor Texts for Math!

Wow! What a week! I coach basketball and we just finished our season (it's quite short here overseas). We had our tournament this weekend and took home the runner-up trophy (lost by 1point in overtime, ugh!) Anyway, I'm back to blogging after a very busy week to link up with Amanda and Stacia at Collaboration Cuties for their fabulous Must Read Mentor Text Linky!! This week's focus is on math so I'm sharing a series that I've enjoyed using with my first graders for our introduction to data handling.

This series is published by Capstone Press and written by Vijaya Bodach. I found them on Amazon a few years ago while I was teaching data and graphing in kindergarten. I was looking for something concise and uncomplicated and these books fit the bill! I love them because they introduce data handling in a simple and clear way for young learners; they are perfect books for K-2!

We started with Tally Charts. This book begins explaining tally marks as a way to record data. Bodach uses the example of keeping score during a game, something that kids can easily relate to.

The next example in the book sets up a great opportunity to discuss surveys with your students. Since we were studying the measurement of time a couple weeks back, we took a survey of students' bed times and dinner times. During small group, we used tally marks to organize the data (sorry, no photo!)

Here's a photo from the book showing favorite ice cream flavors, which always makes for a fun survey!

After using tally marks as a way to record data, I read Bar Graphs to my students to show them how to organize and share their data with others. We graphed our survey data and write summary statements explaining what we had learned about the class.

Next, we read Pictographs because it explains this different type of graph.

We also watched the movie about pictographs:

Using an example from the video (favorite fruits), we created our own tally chart from which we'll make our own pictograph (tomorrow! I'll have to write a follow-up post for that!) - I asked students if they were given a choice of four fruits, which would they pick to eat for snack.

I found this fun freebie clip art by Creative to the Core for us to use when we make our pictograph together:

Lastly, I will be reading Pie Graphs to my students to show them yet another way to show data.

Again, Bodach clearly and simply explains pie graphs in a way that young learners can easily understand. As you can see, the visuals are excellent!

I hope you found these book recommendations helpful! What mentor texts do you use to teach data handling?

Thanks for stopping by!
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  1. I love how primary friendly these books are about data and graphing. This will be perfect to use with my first graders! Thanks so much for sharing! Love the fruit clip art too!! :)

    Learning to the Core

    1. Glad you found it helpful! My students love them :)

  2. Wow! I have never seen these books! They look awesome for introducing graphs!!! I didn't realize you do pie graphs in first grade!! Wow!! I love that there are real pictures in the books!!

    So sorry you guys lost by a point! Arg! I know that's disappointing! Thanks for linking up after a busy week!!

    1. Thanks, Amanda! It was a tough loss, but there's always next year!
      I try not to miss your linky- I love it!

  3. Excellent book suggestions, Karli. I always get some great ideas when I visit you:)


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