My Favorite Dog!


Learning Objectives

With support from the teacher, students will organize, represent, and interpret data. Students will ask and answer questions about the total number of data points and how many are in each category.


Grade Levels



Common Core Standard

Organize, represent, and interpret data with up to three categories; ask and answer questions about the total number of data points, how many in each category, and how many more or less are in one category than in another.

(Note: This is an introductory lesson in data collection and data interpretation. The teacher should revisit this topic again in order to have students practice these skills independently).


Materials Needed

The Perfect Dog by Kevin O’Malley

Computer with internet access




  • Bring students together and introduce the book The Perfect Dog by Kevin O’Malley.
  • Take a survey of the students in order to find out how many have heard about or read the book.
  • Display the results of the survey using a t-chart and tally marks on the whiteboard.
  • Review tally marks with students and explain how the data was collected.
  • Share results with the class.
  • Next, read aloud The Perfect Dog.

Explicit Instruction/Teacher Modeling

  • After the read aloud, return to the board and create a new table, or chart of information, to collect data on students’ favorite type of dog from the story (St. Bernard, Pug, Cocker Spaniel, Collie, Chihuahua, Whippet, Great Dane, German Shepherd, Irish Setter, Brittany Spaniel, Pit Bull or Yellow Labrador Retriever)
  • Explain to students that this survey helps with data collection (or gathering information) and it could be used to create a bar graph.
  • Create a bar graph next to the table to show results from the data collection.
  • Ask the students questions based on the results from the bar graph. For example: Which dog had the fewest votes? Which dog received most of the votes?


  • Ask students to consider why a particular dog was the favorite.
  • With students, visit the AKC’s webpage about dog breeds (Here) and research the top 3 favorite dogs. Read about the top three breeds with students. After you have learned about the three breeds of dogs, ask students to vote again. Discuss the results. Was the first favorite breed of dog still the favorite? Why or why not?


Dog Breeds. (n.d.). Retrieved from

O’Hurley, J. (2013). The Perfect Dog. New York, NY: Grosset & Dunlap.