Target Practice - Line Graphing (and some Algebra)

All the kids ages five to eleven learned from this target practice activity. The goal was to create a line graph based on data collected from shooting at the target. 

First we measured the distance from the target and placed marks at 5 feet intervals.

Each child shot 12 bullets from each of the 5 ft marks from 5 feet to 35 feet.

The number of bullets which stuck to the target we recorded at each location.

To demonstrate an application of the activity I showed them a line graph I created to track the white blood cells in my five year old's blood each day. (She is currently battling Leukemia.)

Then I helped them to create their own graphs. Distance is on the x-axis and number of bullets which hit the target is on the y-axis. From the graph, my oldest used the formula y=mx+b to develop an equation for the line. m is the slope of the line and can be calculated by selecting two points on the line and finding the rise divided by the run. Or the difference between the y-axis points divided by the difference between the x-axis points. b is the y-intercept or y value where the line intersects the y-axis. The line had to be projected to determine the y-intercept and the equation was only good for distances between 10 and 35 feet.

My 5 year old learned about line graphs, my 9 year old practiced graphing and saw practical applications for graphs, while my oldest saw an application for equations for lines and was able to practice creating an equation for a line.

To see more of our hands on math activities please visit our math page.


  1. I love that you made this into an activity for all your children at different levels.

    Thanks for linking to Science Sparks xx

  2. Thank you so much for sharing on the AFterschool Linky. I love how this activity can work for so many ages. Can't wait to see what you share next week!

  3. You do such great hands-on activities with your kids! I love how you tweaked it to be educational for each of the different ages! Thank you for sharing this with us at Trivium Tuesdays!

  4. Visiting from Math Monday Blog Hop. What a cool idea! I love how you made it meaningful for each age group.

  5. Prayers for your sweet girl. This was a great lesson. Thanks for linking up to tip-toe thru tuesday every week.

  6. This was a great post and as a gesture of appreciation to your for linking this to Look What We Did (and because I want to remember where this is) I've pinned this to my math board.

    1. I'm glad you enjoyed it and pinned it. I really like the Look What We Did blog hop. It's one of the best for homeschoolers because it is full of projects for older kids.


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