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Nelson Education > School > Mathematics K-8 > Math Focus > Grade 8> Student Centre > Web Quests > Chapter 8

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Chapter 8: Data Analysis

Roller Coaster Thrills


Roller coasters have been thrilling daredevils for ages. There are people who travel the world just to experience the thrill of a new roller coaster. But which one is the best?



You are a writer from Thrill Seeker Digest. You will decide which roller coaster is the best, based on your research.




  1. Use the web to research roller coasters, such as the Mindbender in Galaxyland, Edmonton, the ancient wooden Coaster in Playland, Vancouver, Montu, Superman, Scream, Raging Bull , Mr. Freeze … and there are many more. Choose your finalists.

  2. Record statistics such as the greatest drop (the distance from the top of a descent to the bottom), length, and maximum speed of each of your finalists in the Roller Coaster Statistics Worksheet . Make sure all of your data are in metric units -- use metres for height and length, and kilometres per hour (km/h) for maximum speed. You can find metric data for roller coasters on Wikipedia.

  3. Graph your data so you can choose the winner.
  4. Justify your choice of graph.
  5. Explain your choice as best roller coaster, referring to your graphs.









Raging Bull

Mr. Freeze


Roller Coaster Statistics Worksheet


grid paper



Criteria Work meets standard of excellence Work meets standard of proficiency Work meets acceptable standard Work does not yet meet acceptable standard
Organizes and displays results
Organizes and displays results in effective and clear ways that enhance interpretation. Organizes and displays results in appropriate and clear ways that enhance interpretation. Organizes and displays results in somewhat appropriate and partially clear ways that make inferring necessary by the reader. Organizes and displays results in haphazard and unclear ways that impede interpretation.
Uses mathematical vocabulary and conventions
Uses effective and specific mathematical language and conventions to enhance communcation. Uses appropriate and correct mathematical language and conventions to support communcation. Uses mathematical language and conventions to partially support communcation. Uses mathematical and non-mathematical language and conventions incorrectly and /or inconsistently, which interferes with communcation.
Makes generalizations
Comprehensively analyzes situations and makes insightful generalizations. Completely analyzes situations and makes logical generalizations.
Superficially analyzes situations and makes simple generalizations.
Is unable to analyze situations and make generalizations.