Unit 8 – 1 week

Primary KS2 Year 6

This topic is part of the national curriculum but is not included in the DfE 2020 guidance or the NCETM Mastery PD Materials. There are no NCETM classroom slides to download for this unit. We hope that teachers/schools will plan to cover this material from their own existing high-quality resources and using the information and suggestions below.

National curriculum statutory requirements (p45)

Pupils should be taught to:

  • interpret and construct pie charts and line graphs and use these to solve problems
  • calculate and interpret the mean as an average.

National curriculum notes and guidance (non-statutory)

Pupils connect their work on angles, fractions and percentages to the interpretation of pie charts. Pupils both encounter and draw graphs relating two variables, arising from their own enquiry and in other subjects. They should connect conversion from kilometres to miles in measurement to its graphical representation. Pupils know when it is appropriate to find the mean of a data set.

When planning this unit, focus on the importance of making connections to other maths concepts that pupils are already secure with (such as proportionality, fractions, percentages and the ordinal position of numbers relative to other numbers), so that they can construct pie charts and line graphs as well as interpret them accurately.

Consider the data handling cycle, the purpose of the collection of the data and which graph would be appropriate to use.

Pie charts

  • Link to fractions, angles, percentages and understanding proportional relationships
  • Consider the use of IT as an accurate and efficient way to create a graph in which a circle is divided into sectors that represent proportions of the whole
  • Draw attention to the central angle and the area of the ‘slice’ being important compared to the whole
  • When constructing pie charts, relate the central angle of each slice back to 360°. For example, an angle of 90° is 1⁄4 of the circle because 90⁄360=1⁄4.
  • Also draw attention to the fact that the size of the circle can be different but still represent the same data.

Line graphs

  • Line graphs are used to represent continuous data; time, length, etc. and to show conversion rates (e.g. kilometres to miles)
  • Reading scales/number lines with labelled intervals is covered in Year 6, Unit 3. Pupils should practise reading measurement and graphing scales with labelled power-of-10 intervals divided into 2, 4, 5 and 10 equal parts. They should use their knowledge of scales to create the appropriate graph for the data presented. Ensure that the children are able to find points that are halfway between intervals.

Mean as an average

Mean is covered in Year 6, Unit 13

Opportunities to address this topic in other Year 6 units in the curriculum prioritisation materials

  • Unit 3 Numbers up to 10,000,000
  • Unit 6 Draw, compose and decompose shapes
  • Unit 7 Fractions and percentages
  • Unit 13 Mean average.

The interpretation of data can be threaded into other units where pupils apply their understanding of number.

Cross-curricular opportunities to address this topic

  • Science and history can present opportunities to display and interpret data in response to a hypothesis such as ‘The heavier the object, the faster it falls’; ‘Most pupils at Healthy Primary School walk to school’; ‘The most common job in Sheffield in the 1930s was a steelworker’
  • Use the data presented in a line graph to answer questions such as: ‘How many more …’ ‘How many fewer…’.