Science 5: Data and Graphing
No matter how cool a scientastic job may be, it'll always need to come back to data and graphing at some point. But hey, paperwork doesn't have to be all bad, right? We've heard there are magical things called pie charts...we like the sound of those.
|Elementary and Middle School||5th Grade|
And occasionally blow things up! [Smoke coming from the desk]
Though…that's not always on purpose…
But there are also some not-so-thrilling times, too… [Piles of papers]
And that's where data and graphing comes in.
See, when a scientist is out examining the way a monkey sleeps or how a weird kind of [Monkey sleeping on the floor]
vine grows or how this cloud somehow keeps showing up in the exact same shape of a toilet,
what they're ultimately doing is collecting lots and lots of data. [Paper full of values and equations]
That's actually the entire purpose of observations and experiments – to produce data.
Even cloud toilet data.
But one look at the wild and crazy notes of an scientist, and you'll realize that this [Page full of random letters and numbers]
data isn't always the easiest thing to understand. [Woman looking confused]
Luckily for us, they know that too!
So how do they go about showcasing their data to other people?
They use graphs.
Not only can graphs be useful for explaining findings to others, but they also make it [Coop pointing at a blackboard]
easy for scientists to see trends and explain results.
And depending on what kind of information you're working with and what you want to show, [Dino pointing at a blackboard]
there's a few different kinds of graphs to choose from.
A pie graph is great for when you're in the mood for a snack, and want to summarize data [Hand takes a slice of the pie]
into parts and percentages.
Okay, so maybe they only look like pies…oh well.
You can still eat pie while using them. [The rest of the pie is taken]
If you wanted to show that the majority of people you interviewed prefer Cheerios over [Guy spinning a basketball on his finger]
Lucky Charms, you could show it in a pie graph like so.
[Guy stood next to his pie chart]
A bar graph, on the other hand, is better suited for when you want to compare sizes.
If you wanted to show how many people in your class preferred a certain super hero, for [Boy wearing a Superman shirt]
instance, you could break your classmates into groups on a graph like this.
This bar graph would compare the sizes of each group nicely, but unfortunately it wouldn't [Bar chart shown]
explain why no one picked The Hulk.
C'mon, guys…this is exactly why he's always so angry… [The Hulk looking angry]
If you were looking to show changes of one thing when compared to another variable, then
a line graph would be your best bet.
Say you wanted to track the temperature in your city over the course of the whole week,
you'd probably use a line graph!
[Woman in a bikini next to a line graph]
So whether bar, line, or pie, using a chart can help you explain your findings and observations
in an easy-to-understand way. [Woman looking happy now she understands]
Each kind of chart has its strengths and weaknesses depending on the data you're working with,
but once you've picked the right one, you're all ready to go…
And, of course, the obvious best of the three is the pie chart.
We know it's not really pie…but if you believe hard enough…maybe… [Pie chart turns into a real pie]