Lesson Plan

What is it Telling Me? Creating and Interpreting Line Plots

Line plots are a great way to introduce your students to graphing data. In this lesson, your students will learn how to create a line plot and also practice interpreting line plots.
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Need extra help for EL students? Try the Let's Interpret the Line Plot pre-lesson.
View aligned standards
Need extra help for EL students? Try the Let's Interpret the Line Plot pre-lesson.

Learning Objectives

Students will create and practice interpreting line plots.

The adjustment to the whole group lesson is a modification to differentiate for children who are English learners.
EL adjustments


(5 minutes)
Create a Line Plot with Data ProvidedCreate a Line Plot with Your Own DataInterpret the Line Plot
  • Ask your students, "Who has heard of people who do research?" Ask them to share some examples of the kinds of research that they have heard of.
  • Ask them, "If you could be a researcher, what would you like to research?"
  • Explain that some people study animals, some study climate change, some study traffic patterns, some study health problems, and all kinds of different topics.
  • Tell them the first and most important thing you need to have be a researcher is a good question.
  • Tell them that they will be conducting some research today and graphing their data on a line plot. They will then interpret their line plot to see what the data is “telling them.”


  • Allow students access to reference materials in their home language (L1) or English to support them in the discussion.
  • Define the following words for students: line plot, data, research, graphing. Have them draw a visual next to the word to demonstrate their understanding.


  • Provide sentence stems and frames to support students as they share. For example, "People do research about ________." and "I would like to research ________ because ________."