K-12 Teaching and Learning From the UNC School of Education

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Learning outcomes

Students will:

  • gather statistical information on countries in Europe and Russia from almanacs to complete charts.
  • take information and create line or bar graphs.
  • analyze information and make observations based on the information by answering questions.

Teacher planning

Time required for lesson

3 days


  • Up-to-date almanacs
  • Combining Research and Graphing Skills Chart Sheet(created by teacher - see below)
  • Question Sheet for Analyzing Statistics (created by teacher - see below)
  • White construction paper
  • Pencil
  • Color makers
  • White or chalk board
  • Chalk or white board marker

Technology resources



Teacher will discuss using the almanac. For guided practice the teacher and students will use the almanac to find the statistics for the United States. The teacher will record these statistics on the board. Teacher should monitor students to be sure that they are able to find the statistics. The following is a list of the statistics that will be used for the lesson.

  • Per capita
  • Gross National/Domestic Product
  • Birth Rate
  • Death Rate<
  • Rate of Natural Increase
  • Infant Mortality Rate
  • Life Expectancy
  • Literacy Rate


Day 1

Teacher will place students into groups of 2 or 3. Each group will receive almanacs and a Combining Research and Graphing Skills Chart Sheet. Each group will be assigned three countries (with at least one country with a lower standard of living and one with a higher standard of living). The groups will work together to find the information they need to fill in the Combining Research and Graphing Skills Chart Sheet. Each student will be responsible for recording the information on the sheet. Here are some possible combinations of countries.

  • Group 1: Croatia, Norway, Belgium
  • Group 2: Sweden, Spain, Austria
  • Group 3: Netherlands, Bosnia Herzegovina, Denmark
  • Group 4: United Kingdom, Portugal, Iceland
  • Group 5: Germany, France, Romania
  • Group 6: Italy, Russia, Finland
  • Group 7: Luxembourg, Greece, Switzerland
  • Group 8: Norway, Bosnia Herzegovina, Iceland

Day 2

Teacher will review how to make a bar and line graph. Teacher will model how to make graphs on the board using the United States and two other countries from the student’s charts. It is important to choose at least one country that has a lower standard of living. Bar graphs seem to be easiest for most students. For students who want a challenge, a pie graph can be done.

Each group will take three of the statistics and make a graph for each. It may help if the teacher assigns the statistics and type of graphs to be used.

Day 3

Each group will receive a Question Sheet for Analyzing Statistics. Using the charts and graphs they will discuss and answer each question. After groups are finished teacher will lead a group discussion using the questions just answered.


Teacher will determine whether the Combining Research and Graphing Skills Chart Sheet are adequately completed. This will count as 40 percent of their individual grade. The group graphs if adequately completed will count as 20 percent of their individual grade. Answered sheets will count as 40 percent of their individual grade. Teacher will also assess understanding by monitoring the classroom while groups are working. Classroom discussion will also be used to assess student understanding.

Supplemental information


Related websites



I find that my students really enjoy looking up information in the almanacs. If a group finishes early sometimes I suggest that they look up different country’s statistics.

  • North Carolina Essential Standards
    • Social Studies (2010)
      • Grade 7

        • 7.G.1 Understand how geography, demographic trends, and environmental conditions shape modern societies and regions. 7.G.1.1 Explain how environmental conditions and human response to those conditions influence modern societies and regions (e.g. natural barriers,...

North Carolina curriculum alignment

Information Skills (2000)

Grade 6

  • Goal 2: The learner will IDENTIFY and USE criteria for excellence to evaluate information and formats.
    • Objective 2.01: Identify published criteria of excellence for resources.
    • Objective 2.02: Apply identified criteria to select resources.
  • Goal 3: The learner will RELATE ideas and information to life experiences.
    • Objective 3.02: Collect and compare information about diverse cultures, environments, and peoples.
  • Goal 4: The learner will EXPLORE and USE research processes to meet information needs.
    • Objective 4.07: Organize and use information.
    • Objective 4.09: Produce and present findings in various formats (print, graphical, audio, video, multimedia).