The main problem students have with drawing pie charts is working out the angles. Barcharts are easy, but as soon as protractors are involved the shutters go down.
How about using the whole class to turn a barchart into a pie chart using nothing more than a playground and a piece of chalk?
1. Pick a topic eg How did you get to school today?
2. Get pupils to move into the correct groups eg Automobile (car), Bus, Walk, Cycle
3. Create a human barchart eg
4. Move the bars in order into a line
5. Move the bars into a circle
(You’ve just turned a barchart into a circle)
6. Mark the centre of the circle, mark in the lines between each section (4 sectors)
7. Ask how many degrees one person represents.
8. Ask how many degrees each sector is worth.
Note: If you have a low ability group or no calculators you may wish to edit the number involved to be a factor of 360. Extra pupils can be keeping notes on a mini whiteboard.
9. To consolidate this you can repeat this with a different question.
10. To extend this task you can split up the class into two groups and ask a different question. They must create two pie charts and compare the data.
This activity is a great task as it makes for a memorable lesson and good discussion point. If you take pictures for a wall display it can make a nice revision prompt.