Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Ketchup to Collecting Data

Beverly Kyte


Do your students love ketchup? Students collect data for a survey of 3 brands of ketchup and create class charts.


The student collects data for a survey with two or more categories or choices and creates a class chart or pictograph.


-3 different brands of ketchup with the name brand covered up and marked with A, B, or C
-Paper plates
-French fries (at least 3 for each child)
-Recording sheet for each student-Ketchup Taste Test (See Associated File)
-[Tomatoes to Ketchup] by Inez Snyder (Welcome Books: How Things Are Made) 2003


1. Gather materials for activity.
2. Make copies of the Ketchup Taste Test (See Associated File) for each student.


1. Ask students if they like ketchup. Name some different brands of ketchup and ask who likes that particular brand. Ask if there is a brand that they like that you did not mention.

2. Show the students the 3 bottles of ketchup and discuss how they can not tell by looking at them what is the name brand. Tell students that they will be doing a taste test of the 3 brands of ketchup by dipping 3 different French fries in the 3 different brands.

3. Put out 3 paper plates on a table and label A, B, C. Pour ketchup in the plate from each corresponding bottle. Place plate of French fries on the table.

4. Distribute Ketchup Taste Test sheet. Tell students they will record the ketchup they like best on the Ketchup Taste Test sheet by coloring in that bottle of ketchup red.

5. Explain to students that they will also collect data from the class to make a class chart of the ketchup that is liked best by the entire class and record this data by using tally marks on the Ketchup Taste Test sheet. Tell the students they will be assessed on completing the activity and recording their data correctly.

6. Have students take turns tasting the 3 brands of ketchup and coloring in the one they like best on their Ketchup Taste Test sheet.

7. After each student has tasted the ketchup brands, explain to them that they will now collect and record data from their classmates. Tell them that they will put a tally mark as each child tells their favorite brand of ketchup in the correct row A, B, or C on their Ketchup Taste Test sheet. Each child’s survey sheet should have the same results.

8. Take turns letting each student tell their favorite brand. Students make tally marks on their sheets to record this as each child shares.

9. After each child has shared their favorite brand and the students have recorded the data, take covers off the labels on the ketchup bottles to reveal the brands.

10. Have students count their tally marks to see what brand the class liked the best. Have students fill in the blank at the bottom of the Ketchup Taste Test sheet to name the brand liked best by the class.

11. Discuss with the class why it might be important to do a survey. Compare the results of the survey by asking questions such as: Which brand did our class like the best? The least? How many more students liked Brand A than Brand B? How many students liked Brand B or Brand C?


This lesson assesses collecting data for a survey and creating a class chart.

Use Ketchup Taste Test Chart (See Associated Files) to formatively assess students’ ability to: collect data and create class charts by surveying different brands of ketchup.

Provide directions and feedback for students in recording data.

The teacher should observe students using tally marks correctly.


1. Lead students in orally collecting the data on the board together.
2. Discuss if their choice of ketchup was different from what they thought it would be.
3. Discuss class results using mathematical language and comparing and contrasting.
4. Use information from the class charts to make a class graph.
5. Survey another class to compare the results.
6. Decide on another item or product that the class could survey.
7. Students then write a summary of the activity using first, next, then, and last. Invite some students to share.
8. Discuss what ketchup is made from and other products you can put ketchup on.
9. Read by Inez Snyder [Tomatoes to Ketchup] (Welcome Books: How Things Are Made) 2003

Attached Files

This is a document that the students use to collect data.     File Extension: pdf

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