Fun & Easy Graphing Activities for Grades 1 and 2

graphing activities

Graphing can be one of the most fun and interactive math concepts to teach primary students. They can be involved in all the steps from data collection to tallying results to displaying their findings in concrete graphs, bar graphs, and pictographs. Using fun graphing activities that engage students is key to helping them learn the concepts. I've listed 5 fun graphing activities below to help you get started with teaching graphing to your students!

Sort & Tally Activity

Students can sort objects (real or pictures) into groups, count them, and tally up the totals.  You will also need to teach them how to use tally marks and create a simple chart.  Items you can sort and tally are pompoms, buttons, crayons, counters, pattern blocks, shapes, connecting cubes, candy, marbles or colored paper clips.

sort and tally activity

Or they can practice with a sorting worksheet like this one!

graphing activity

Create a Concrete Graph Activity

Sometimes students can benefit from a hands-on activity like creating a concrete graph.  Have your students collect some data and display it in a concrete graph using cubes, counters, or other small items.

concrete graph


Create a Class Pictograph

Another fun activity is creating a graph with your class.  Topics could include pets, favorite colors, school subjects, or birthdays.  Choose a symbol to represent the data in the graph.  For example, if you are creating a birthday graph, you could give students a picture of a cake or a cupcake.  Each student can color their picture and place it under their birthday month or season.  You can then easily see which month or season has the most birthdays.

class graphing activity


Create a Bar Graph

Teach your students how to create a simple bar graph.  Use some graphing paper or create your own!  Have students color in the squares to represent the data.  You can also include a checklist so students can be sure that they have put all the information needed.

bar graph activity

The activity pictured above can be found here.

Survey & Graph Activity

Once students know how to make bar graphs and pictographs, you can have them complete a project that involves surveying their classmates, tallying the results, and displaying the information in the form of a graph.  You can use these types of graphing activities as assessments.

create a bar graph worksheet


If you like these ideas, you can find many of the activities in the graphing resources below!