How To Get to Know Your Math Students with this Easy Graphing Activity
It’s almost back to school season here is the South! Are you a math teacher wondering how you can incorporate data into a back to school activity? Here is an easy, hands-on activity that will give you great information about your class and engage students at the same time!
I always felt so limited on time at the beginning of each school year but knew that getting to know my students mattered! The first year I taught middle school math, I tried having the students write a letter to me about their previous math experiences. This was great and gave me a lot of insight into my students’ perceived strengths and weaknesses, but 100 letters to read is daunting! It was also difficult to get a feel for learning preferences.
I started my gifted endorsement that year and learned about multiple intelligences. In our class, we took a survey to discover our own multiple intelligences and graphed the results as a visual. This spoke to my math teacher brain! The following activity allows students to discover their own multiple intelligences, graph the results, and compare them to other classmates. It gives the teacher great information about differentiation needs for the school year. And who isn’t itching to break in new school supplies???
Multiple Intelligences Graphing Activity
- A multiple intelligences survey – check out THIS SURVEY from Laura Candler! It has a great introduction, directions, and further resources for teachers
- Grid Paper – I prefer to use centimeter grid paper for this activity. Print some HERE!
- 8 Different Colored Markers, Colored Pencils, or Crayons
Have students complete the survey. Use the directions provided with the survey. I always modeled the first couple on my interactive whiteboard as a think-aloud. Have students total their responses to the survey.
On the centimeter grid paper, I direct my students to set the categories along the x-axis of the graph and number the y-axis with the greatest possible score. If you use the linked survey, students can number to 15.
Decide on a color key with students so that they can easily compare their intelligences. For example, everyone colors their total Naturalist score yellow.
Model this step first!!! Have students cut along the outline of their graph so that all excess grid paper is removed. Students should leave the left portion with the x and y-axes. See the two steps here:
Now that students are finished cutting their graphs, they can do some comparisons. Challenge students to find someone with a similar profile or choose one intelligence for students to compare. Emphasize that there is not a “good” or “best” intelligence. Students can stack their graphs to compare or hold them side-by-side.
When students are finished, you could post these by class on a bulletin board. The visual is great for teachers and students alike! Be sure to reference the graphs as you plan activities and lessons.