Graphing with Students who are Nonverbal

In the unending battle towards incorporating Common Core standards and academics into the curriculum of all my students, I created this useful visual for graphing. Ugh – do any of you feel overwhelmed about this like I do? With my students who are more academic and verbal I have a much easier time utilize state and common core standards when creating goals, activities, and lessons. But with some of my less verbal students this can be much more challenging. I want the work they are doing to be meaningful. I have a little pet peeve for some of those seemingly useless ‘academic’ file folder activities that teachers use as a great percentage of their academic curriculum. Okay fine your student can match the same 4 community helpers to the correct locations on the file folder – which ahem – never move! So I’m pretty sure your student just memorized the order of the pieces and are not actually make any correct associations about community helpers. ARGH. Rant over.

Anywho  – I really like this visual because I think some my students who are lower functioning actually do start to get it. And they are participating in a graphing activity that is appropriate for them.


This was fairly easy to make. I made the visual on boardmaker and made the boxes on excel and taped them on a file folder. I laminted the whole thing and then made the coordinating bars for the bar graph.

We do this as part of our morning group activities. Students add the velcro bars to the chart according to the day’s temperature.

We store all of the bars next to the chart.

This visual helps some of my higher students associate the numerical temperature value with the appropriate weather vocabulary hot, warm, cool, and cold. One student is in charge of looking up the temperature each morning as part of their independent morning routine.



Don’t forget – today is the last day for my Welcome Winter sale! Everything at my TpT is 20% off. Sneak in a little holiday shopping for useful and grab a few things for those long winter months ahead!


  1. I’ve had this post bookmarked since you put it up, and today I made my own version for my class. It’s a great idea – love it! I can’t wait to incorporate it into our circle time after break. Thanks!


  2. Awesome Kara! Let me know how it goes with your kiddos 🙂

  3. Thank you for sharing this! I have temperature embedded into my morning work each day but I feel like my students are not absorbing the task. I can’t wait to make this!

    My Best,


  4. Awesome Danielle! Glad to hear it’s helpful!

  5. I see the chart only goes up to 12 days. What do you do once the 12 days is gone and how do you incorporate this in with the number of days in the month?

    Thank You,

  6. You can print it out as many pages of the graph paper as you like if you want to account for the whole month. We just didn’t have space on my board 🙂

  7. I noticed that the blue squares at the bottom are smaller, and there are also small squares at the top. Why? Would it be less complicated to have the bars the same size as the graph pieces on the left?


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