Close message Scootle will stop supporting resources that use the Adobe Flash plug-in from 18 Dec 2020. Learning paths that include these resources will have alerts to notify teachers and students that one or more of the resources will be unavailable. Click here for more info.

Learning objects Rice crisp machine: plot the variation

TLF ID L3192

Check whether a machine is packing most bags with an acceptable number of rice crisps (20–35 rice crisps per packet). Take a sample of 100 packets and make a boxplot to analyse the results. Sort the sample data into four equal groups. Identify the range, median, first and third quartile values. Position the data points to build a boxplot. Take more samples and plot the variation by building a sequence of boxplots on a graph. Identify conclusions supported by the evidence. This learning object is the second in a series of two objects. The series is also packaged as a combined learning object.

Educational details

Key learning objectives
  • Students identify the maximum, minimum, median, first and third quartiles from a set of data.
  • Students construct and interpret boxplots.
Educational value
  • Helps students to analyse sample variation by constructing and interpreting boxplots.
  • Features automatic collation of sample results.
  • Highlights maximum, median, quartile and minimum values in an array.
  • Emphasises the importance of sorting data before analysis.
  • Provides drill practice to reinforce the five-point summary needed to construct a boxplot.
  • Demonstrates why some quartile values are not whole numbers.
  • Tests understanding of data interpretation by getting students to restate conclusions.
Year level


Learning area
  • mathematics
  • Mathematics/Statistics and probability
    • Mathematics/Summary statistics
    • Mathematics/Surveys
    • Mathematics/Sampling
    • Mathematics/Statistics
    • Mathematics/Data analysis
    • Mathematics/Data collection
    • Knowledge;
    • Comprehension;
    • Application;
    • Analysis
    Student activity
    • Interactives;
    • Analysis;
    • Modelling;
    • Data manipulation and interpretation
    Learning design
    • Experiential learning;
    • Independent learning;
    • Problem solving;
    • Visual learning

    Other details

    • Script writer
    • Name: Michael Wagner
    • Organisation: Godwin + Wagner
    • Address: Box Hill South VIC 3128 Australia
    • Subject matter expert
    • Name: Sue Ferguson
    • Organisation: Sue Ferguson Consulting Pty Ltd
    • Address: Northcote VIC 3070 Australia
    • Educational validator
    • Name: Graham Jones
    • Address: Broadbeach QLD 4218 Australia
    • Technical implementer
    • Publisher
    • Date of contribution: 20 Sep 2013
    • Organisation: Education Services Australia
    • Address: Melbourne VIC 3000 Australia
    • URL:
    Access profile
    • Colour independence
    • Device independence
    • Hearing independence
    Learning resource type
    • Interactive Resource
    • Microsoft Internet Explorer - minimum version: 8.0 (MS-Windows) - maximum version: 9.0 (MS-Windows)
    • Firefox - minimum version: (MS-Windows)
    • Safari - minimum version: 5.1 (MacOS)
    Operating systems
    • MacOS - minimum version: 10.6
    • MS-Windows - minimum version: XP - maximum version: 7
    • © Education Services Australia Ltd, 2013, except where indicated under Acknowledgements.