What's for Lunch?

A Class Experiment


To create a graph showing what each person had for lunch.

Collect the Data:

  1. The class determines what the lunchroom choices were today.
  2. List each choice in the table below.
  3. Your leader will call the roll. Everyone answer with what he or she ate for lunch.
  4. Write down each person's name next to the item(s) that he or she had for lunch.
  5. When the roll call is finished, add up how many people ate each kind of food. Record your results in the column marked "Number"

Food Names of People who ate that food People who ate that food
NumberFraction of classPercent of class

Analyze the Data

  1. How many people are here today?
  2. Find the fraction of the class that ate each kind of food.
    Divide the number of people eating each kind of food by the number of people in the class.
  3. Find the percentage of the class that ate each kind of food.
    Multiply the fraction of people eating each kind of food by 100%.
  4. Do the percentages add up to 100%. Why or why not?

Graph the Data:

We will plot the data in a bar graph. This type of graph is called a histogram. A histogram is a special kind of bar graph. Histograms show the frequency with which events occur. In this case we will be plotting the frequency with which people ate pizza, or salad, or whatever.

  1. Plot the data on a piece of quadrille paper.
  2. Make a column for each category of food. Label each column appropriately.
  3. Label the vertical axis "Number of People".
  4. Color in one block for each person who ate a given type of food.
  5. Is your graph too small to be easily read? Can you enlarge it? How?
  6. Prepare a second graph utilizing the entire piece of graph paper, or most of it.