The Standard Deviation Lesson Plan Overview

The standard deviation lesson plan is based on the understanding of what standard deviation is calculating. This is done before they ever learn how to calculate it using technology. Understanding that standard deviation is measuring the deviation of the change off of the mean is very important in Algebra 1, and this activity is visual and straightforward for students to understand.

The Standard Deviation Lesson Plan Covers

  • S.ID.1 - Represent data with plots on the real number line (dot plots, histograms, and box plots).
  • S.ID.2 - Use statistics appropriate to the shape of the data distribution to compare center (median, mean) and spread (interquartile range, standard deviation) of two or more different data sets.

The Standard Deviation Lesson Plan Emphasizes the Mathematical Practices

  • MP5 Use appropriate tools strategically.
  • MP7 Look for and make use of the structure.

The Flow of the Standard Deviation Lesson Plan

This lesson starts with a bellringer and moves into an activity that will ask students to judge two different histograms and compare them using standard deviation. This comparison gives you the perfect opportunity to create mathematical discourse in your classroom. Allow the students to debate and discuss will cement this concept into their memories. The PowerPoint will allow you to ask great questions while being able to reference the graphs in front of the classroom. Once students have a clear understanding of what standard deviation is measuring, the direction of the class will move towards calculating the standard deviation using technology. In this lesson, we discuss Desmos as a tool. But you can use any technology for this assignment. Finally, the class will finish up by having an exit slip showing their understanding of how to calculate and interpret a standard deviation problem.

Free Standard Deviation Worksheet/Activity


The Complete Standard Deviation Lesson Plan Includes:

  • Day 54: Standard Deviation Lesson Plan
  • Bellringer
  • Day 54: PowerPoint Presentation
  • Standard Deviation Comparison Activity
  • Standard deviation practice worksheet
  • Exit Slip

Members: Use this link to access the full Day 54: Standard Deviation lesson plan download:

Powerful Questions

The following questions can be used during the standard deviation's lesson plan to help your students better understand the concept that we are talking about today.

  • What approaches did you use to decide which graph had the larger standard deviation?
  • What features of a histogram seem to have no bearing on the standard deviation?
  • What do features appear to affect the standard deviation?

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Standard Deviation Lesson Plan