Lesson plan

Let's Graph Our Fall Favorites!

This engaging math lesson combines all of your kid's fall favorites as they learn to represent data using a bar graph.
Grade Subject View aligned standards

Students will be able to make a bar graph to represent data.

(5 minutes)


  • Create fall baskets for each small group of students. Make sure you put different amounts of fall items in each basket (e.g., four pumpkins, six pinecones, etc.) so each group's bar graph will vary.


  • Gather the students together in a comfortable area.
  • Write the word data on the whiteboard. Ask the students, "Have you ever collected data before?" Allow the students a few minutes to turn and talk with an elbow partner to share their ideas.
  • Encourage a few students to share their ideas with the class.
  • Clarify that data is facts or statistics that is collected to learn more about something.
  • Explain to the students that today they will be exploring baskets of things that remind you of fall. They are going to find out whose basket has the most, least, and the same amount of certain fall items.
  • Continue by explaining to the students that they will create bar graphs to represent the data, or items, they find in their fall baskets. Elaborate that bar graphs are graphs that show data in a visual way.
(10 minutes)
  • Get out one of the premade fall baskets.
  • Project the Blank Bar Graph worksheet on the whiteboard or wall.
  • Call on a few student volunteers to come up to the front of the room.
  • Pour the contents from the basket out on a table. Explain to the students, "Each of us is going to be responsible for counting the amount of one or two of these fall items. For example, if our group decides as a team that Jamal will count the pumpkins and pinecones, then Jamal's job is to record how many pumpkins and pinecones there are. He'll write his answer on a scrap sheet of paper."
  • Model writing the following sentence frames on the board:
    • There are ____ pumpkins.
    • There are ____ pinecones.
  • Instruct students to turn and talk to an elbow partner, restating the directions in their own words.
  • Continue by explaining to the students that after everyone has recorded their answers on a scrap sheet of paper, they will start filling in the Blank Bar Graph worksheet.
  • Review the steps to create a bar graph including the x-axis, y-axis, title, and where to write item names.
(10 minutes)
  • Have a student model graphing one of the items (e.g., the pumpkins they counted) on the Blank Bar Graph worksheet.
  • Encourage another student volunteer to explain the steps orally to the rest of the class. Clarify any confusion and review steps and directions as needed.
  • Split the students up into small groups and allow them to come up with appropriate (silly is totally okay) group names.
  • Pass out the fall baskets to each group and the rest of the supplies needed to complete the activity.
  • Write the following step-by-step directions on the whiteboard:
    1. Dump out the contents of the fall basket on your table.
    2. Assign each group member 1-2 items to be responsible for counting, depending on the number of different items in the basket.
    3. Record number of items on scrap sheet of paper.
    4. Check each other's math.
    5. Create your graph (use pencils).
    6. Use crayons to color in your bar graph.
    7. Design a fun fall border with your classmates.
  • Ask a student to read the directions aloud to the rest of the class.
(15 minutes)
  • Give students time to work in their small groups.
  • Rotate around the classroom and provide students with support as necessary.


  • Allow students to work in a small, teacher-led group during independent work time.
  • Check in with students after they've completed each step to provide manageable chunks of information opposed to large amounts.


  • Allow students to design their own bar graph using construction paper instead of using the premade Blank Bar Graph worksheet.
  • Encourage students to label each part of their graph (e.g., x-axis, y-axis, title, etc.).
(15 minutes)
  • Provide each group with a piece of tape. Instruct students to hang their graphs around the classroom.
  • Provide each student with one of the Graph Your Fall Favorites worksheets.
  • Review the worksheet with students, projecting your copy on the whiteboard to assist students in understanding.
  • Clarify the meaning of the word most and least in student-friendly language (e.g., the most is the greatest amount, the least is the smallest amount).
  • Explain to the students that now they'ill have a gallery walk around the classroom. First, they should enter the information about their group's data. Next, they will find the number of items for each group and add them together. They will need to show their work (e.g., add the number of items per group to show the total amount in all).
  • Give students time to complete the worksheet.
  • Allow students to share their findings with the rest of the class.
  • Collect student work and check for accuracy.
(5 minutes)
  • Gather the students back together as a whole group.
  • Ask students to think-pair-share what data is and how we can represent it using a bar graph.
  • Ask students to share their favorite part of the lessons. Provide sentence starters as necessary, such as:
    • My favorite part of the lesson was ____.

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