Day 9: Bad Graph, Good Graph

I found this idea created by Jeffery Kent called Misleading-Graphical-Displays-Project.  (Jeffery, if you happen to read this post, please share your website so others can experience your wonderful activities).  Jeffery even has a rubric to go along with the project!!  Here is a copy of my version and I kept the same rubric.

In a nutshell, the project asks students to find a misleading graph and make a copy.  Then they write an analysis of the graphical representation and, at a minimum, answer the following questions about it:

  1. What do you think makes the representation misleading? (For example, does the scale start somewhere other than zero or are the scales misleading?)
  2. What do you think was the creator’s purpose in creating the display in a misleading manner?  (For example, do you think the creator was trying to make consumers think a project was better than it was?  Do you think the author was trying to emphasize a point?)
  3. What could the creator have done to make the representation fair and non-misleading?

One change I made to the project was to require the students to create a new graphical display that fairly represents the data being displayed.  In addition to the “fair” representation, I asked them to create a graphical representation of the data that is misleading in the opposite direction.  

Today, my students were so excited about their posters that they wanted to present them (without it even being required!).  So I had them share in their groups, and then post all of them outside my room in the hall. Great PR for AP Stats and they have an authentic audience.

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My kiddos gave the mini-project a “two thumbs up” and said they really had fun with it.  Here are a couple examples of their awesome work.  Now I am just as excited to assess them.

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I was so happy with the success of this project.  What project have you tried that turned out to be a “keeper?”


Posted on September 18, 2015, in Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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