How can we use excel to make charts?

Katherine Callaghan

Summer Research Program for Science Teachers

Summer 2006

Standards:

National Content Standard E:

• Propose designs and choose between alternative solutions. Students should demonstrate thoughtful planning for a piece of technology or technique. Students should be introduced to the roles of models and simulations in these processes.

• Communicate the problem, process, and solution. Students should present their results to students, teachers, and others in a variety of ways, such as orally, in writing, and in other forms--including models, diagrams, and demonstrations.

Do Now: What types of charts have you learned about in math and science class? Pick a type of chart and give an example of what type of data it could be used for. (for example a line graph could be used to compare the daily temperature in two cities over the month of July).

Go over Do now with students reviewing the types of charts that we have learned so far.

Then ask them to get into lab groups, and explain the directions to them, and that they will only get a computer once they have a filled out their data table. (Day 1)

Day (2) Start by showing students how to do charts in excel on the overhead projector before they makes theirs and put them into power point slides.  Then collect the slides on your flash drive and show them on the overhead projector and have students explain their slides to the class.

EXCEL CHARTS:

1)      In your group pick a variable about the class that you want to investigate. What is it?

2)      Draw a data table below and then raise your hand for the teacher to come and check it before you start collecting data.

5)      What type of graph do you want to make? Why?

6)      High light your data table and go to the Menu bar’s “insert” and chose “chart”

7)      Choose the type of chart you want to make and click “next”

8)      Look at the sample picture of your chart- does it look right? If not raise your hand.

9)      If it looks right click “next”

10)   Type in the title of your chart and click “next”

11)   Save your chart as a sheet in excel.

Questions: TO BE ANSWERED ON THIS SHEET AND TYPED INTO A POWERPOINT SLIDE WITH YOUR CHART ON IT

1) Explain what the chart shows you that you wouldn’t be able to see by looking just at the numbers.

2) Explain how you decided what kind of chart you made.

3) What conclusions can you make about the class based on the data you collected and analyzed?

Extra credit: Make a different type of graph from the same data table and write an explanation describing why one type of chart is better than the other type.