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Paul D. Coverdell World Wise Schools

Paul D. Coverdell World Wise Schools

Community Health Data Analysis

Clean Water and Quality of Life-Math Extension

Africa, Cameroon
Grades 3-5
Mathematics, Social Studies & Geography

Students will view the slide show "Water Source Protection", featuring Peace Corps Volunteer Lauren Fry. They will then examine the community health data she collected and explore the question: Do the data provide evidence that the springbox may have helped to improve the community's health?


  • Students will represent multiple sets of data
  • Students will make inferences using numerical data. 


  • Community Health Data
  • Graphing Sheet 
  • Markers


  1. Begin by viewing Lauren Fry's slideshow Water Source Protection and discussing central concepts using the accompanying lesson plan.
  2. Provide pairs of students with a copy of the Community Health Data Lauren collected and a copy of the Graphing Sheet. Explain that the data show how many people were getting sick before and after the springbox was built.
  3. On the graphing sheet, have students plot the data using two different colored markers.
  4. Discuss students' findings.
  • Do the data provide evidence that the springbox may have influenced people's health? [Yes. For almost all families, fewer people were getting sick after the springbox was built].
  • Do the data prove that the springbox caused the community's health to improve? [No. We can't be sure there wasn't another factor, like greater community awareness about drinking filtered water, or increased access to medication that led to improved health. However, we can see a correlation between springbox presence and fewer sicknesses, which does suggest a relationship between the springbox and health]. 

Frameworks & Standards

Enduring Understandings
  • Numbers are informative, but can't always tell us the whole story of a real-world situation.
  • Data can help us understand the magnitude and dynamics of real-world situations.
Essential Questions
  • Why can't we always prove what caused something to change?
  • What can data help us to infer about real-world situations?

Common Core State Standards for Mathematics

  • Measurement and Data
    • Represent and interpret data.

U.S. National Geography Standards

  • Essential Element V: Environment and Society
    • How physical systems affect human systems

National Curriculum Standards for Social Studies

  • Thematic Strand III: People, Places, and Environments
    • Influences of natural resources on human populations  
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