
Lesson Plan Template:
General Lesson Plan

Learning Objectives: What will students know and be able to do as a result of this lesson?
 Students will be able to construct a scatter plot with an appropriate scale from a set of collected data.
 Students will be able to compute the correlation coefficient using a graphing calculator or other appropriate technology.
 Students will be able to use the correlation coefficient to interpret the linear model in terms of its sign (direction) and its magnitude (strength).

Prior Knowledge: What prior knowledge should students have for this lesson?
Students will need to know how to graph points and the properties of a linear function.
Students will need to know how to use a TI84 graphing calculator.
Students will need to know the difference between positive/negative and weak/strong correlations.
Students will need to be able to appropriately scale a graph.
Students will need to know the meaning of a correlation.

Guiding Questions: What are the guiding questions for this lesson?
 How are my sleep and grades related?

Predict: What event, related to the focus topic, that may surprise students, will the students make a prediction about?
(10 minutes)
The teacher will make a prediction and explain his/her reasoning for the following questions. This will be presented orally.

Do you think that there is a correlation between a mammal’s body weight and brain weight? Why? What factors may affect this? (are humans included, how many, how large is the sample size, etc.)

If so, would you say that it is positive or negative?

If so, do you think it would be a strong or weak correlation?
Students will make a prediction and explain their reasoning for the following questions. This will be written in their notebook.
 Do you think that there is a correlation between hours of sleep and your grades? Why? What factors may affect this? (how large is the sample size, what are the ages of the people in the data, grades for what subject, etc.)

If so, would you say that it is positive or negative?

If so, do you think it would be a strong or weak correlation?
Students will then turn and share their predictions and reason to their partner. (discussion/debate)
The teacher will have a few students share their discussions.

Observe: What will the students observe and/or infer during this step of the lesson? How will students communicate their observations and inferences?
Teacher (10 minutes)
Students will observe the teacher constructing a scatter plot on a TI84 calculator from a set of data (mammal body weight vs brain weight attached) and explaining how to do so. The teacher will then explain and show students how to calculate the correlation coefficient on each of their calculators for the teacher's set of data (see teacher notes for instructions). The teacher will reflect on the data presented and interpret the sign and magnitude of the correlation coefficient further explaining what this actually means. (graph and answers are attached)
Class (5 minutes)
As a class you will collect data that will help to confirm or deny students' predictions. The teacher will pass out a post it note for each student with their grade as a percent (but no name). Students will then write their average number of hours that they sleep each night on the post it. Students will place their post it notes on the white board. Class will have a discussion about what they observe from the class postings of grades. They will then begin to make inferences about whether or not their prediction is an accurate one.
Student pairs (15 minutes)
With their partner, students will construct a scatter plot of the data (hours of sleep vs grade in class) on white boards. Students will calculate the correlation coefficient using TI84 calculators (see teacher notes for instructions). Students will display their graphs leaning their white boards against the teacher's white board for discussion. Students will observe that they may have used different scales, gotten different coefficient values, scatter plots look different, etc. They will also observe that if the scatter plot is increasing the correlation coefficient is positive and if it is decreasing then it is negative. Students, with their partner, will infer and explain to the class if they feel there is a strong or weak correlation or none at all.

Explain: How will students be encouraged to develop explanations using their observations and scientific or mathematical concepts or principles?
(20 minutes)
Students will be explaining their scatter plot (how it was constructed, why, and what it means) and whether or not there is a correlation and exactly what that means in terms of the relationship between the sleep hours and grades. Their explanation should refer to their prediction as well. See explanation/discussion questions below.
Students will discuss the findings with their teacher and reflect on their predictions realizing that it is ok to be wrong. The most important thing for students to understand about predictions is that they should learn from them and they could always change their prediction as the process or experiment moves along.
The teacher will lead discussion whole group and give feedback to the inferences given by the partners.
The teacher will answer the following questions verbally for the students to begin to understand what is needed for an exemplar explanation:
 Was my prediction correct?
 Is there a correlation between mammal body weight and mammal brain weight?
 If so, is it a strong or weak correlation and is it positive or negative?
 What did I learn today that would help me make a better prediction in the future?
Students will answer the following questions in their notebook:
 Was my prediction correct?
 Is there a correlation between hours of sleep each night and math grades for students?
 If so, is it a strong or weak correlation and is it positive or negative?
 What did I learn today that would help me make a better prediction in the future?

Summative Assessment
(15 minutes)
The teacher will need to display the data (from the attachment) and the the following criteria/instructions on whiteboard, projector, etc.
Using the given data, students will:
 construct a scatter plot by hand
 calculate the correlation coefficient on the calculator
 write an interpretation of the correlation coefficient in terms of its magnitude and strength.
Each of the three tasks above can be done on postit notes and stuck up on large poster paper for easy assessment and to move away from a traditional paper/pencil test.
See attachments for the summative assessment data set and answer key.

Formative Assessment
Students will be asked questions during discussion that they will answer verbally. Students may choose to take notes in their interactive notebook.
 How do you calculate a correlation coefficient?
 What would a strong or weak correlation look like and what does that mean?
 After plotting points, what relation does the scatter plot suggest?
 Do you think that if your graph had outliers, it would affect the correlation coefficient? If so, how?

Feedback to Students
Students will comment to each other about their predictions and their observations.
The teacher will monitor student discussions, questioning and interacting with students to dispel misconceptions and further understanding.