Our middle-school science teacher wants to have her science lab experiment's instructions and results DIGITALLY. I suggested using Google Forms (here's just a sample) and letting the students input their observations and results. But how or what tool then should she use for the students to plot-in their findings using a graph digitally? I didn't find that as an option on Google Forms. Part of the objective of the experiment is to learn how to use graphs.

Any help would be appreciated.

Tags: forms, google, google_forms, science

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Create a Graph (http://nces.ed.gov/nceskids/createAgraph/default.aspx) allows them to save graphs as a JPG or PDF. Maybe they could try that?
Google Forms input data into the Google Sheet, which is perfectly capable of doing the graphing.. (make sure you open the google form for editing come time to do the graph)
You can insert Charts (those are graphs) on a Google Spreadsheet and the form saves the data in a spreadsheet.
I agree with the others that the Google spreadsheet can also graph the data. If you create the graph on another sheet in the same file, you can show the (form-fed) data and then tab over to the graph after students discuss what type of graph would be useful. An example of this data+graph combination is at the bottom of this wikispace page.

There's something special about paper-and-pencil graph making, at least when learning how to do them. Every graph building program I've seen has the purpose of making the process easier and more automatic. That approach foils the goal of learning how to make graphs properly. (I'm assuming that you're seeking a means for children to learn how to make graphs rather than to use them.)

My own software makes graphs automatically but is focused on grades 6-12. Even so, I hear that some children have not yet learned to make graphs. This problem seems to be quite serious for a great many children. Until someone builds a graph-making tool that emulates the manual process instead of short-circuiting it, I see no way except for paper and pencil.

A good graph-learning program should allow students to select axis scales, type axis labels, and position the points with the mouse cursor one at a time. Although I have the pieces necessary to create this tool, it's non-trival.

You're welcome to contact me if I can be of further assistance.
Harry makes a good point. If your objective is to teach graph making, then pencil and paper is probably better than using a spreadsheet or graphing program.

With older students, an argument could be made that they should be graphing larger data sets and engaging in discussions that call for them to filter/change what/how they graph. In this situation, where interpreting graphs is the focus of the lesson, I always had my students use a simple graphing program like Vernier's Graphical Analysis so that a dread of the act of graphing was not a barrier to the point of the activity.

I like the idea of combining data across groups or classes. An input form and a shared spreadsheet (maybe embedded in a class wiki) would support this. After the classes recorded their data throughout the day, students could go to the online data table and graph the data manually.
It's the Science teacher's objective for the students to learn how to graph so I agree with using the paper-pencil method unless someone can come up with a software tool that is comparable to the old-fashion way.

I thank you all for your response.



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