"I Happen to Be One of 47.8%": Social-Emotional and Data Reasoning in Middle School Students' Comics about Friendship

Effective data literacy instruction requires that learners move beyond understanding statistics to being able to humanize data through a contextual understanding of argumentation and reasoning in the real-world. In this paper, we explore the implementation of a co-designed data comic unit about adolescent friendships. The 7th grade unit involved students analyzing data graphs about adolescent friendships and crafting comic narratives to convey perspectives on that data. Findings from our analysis of 33 student comics, and interviews with two teachers and four students, show that students engaged in various forms of data reasoning and social-emotional reasoning. These findings contribute an understanding of how students make sense of data about personal, everyday experiences; and how an arts-integrated curriculum can be designed to support their mutual engagement in both data and social-emotional reasoning.

Vacca, R., DesPortes, K., Tes, M., Silander, M., Matuk, C., Amato, A., Woods, P. (2022). "I happen to be one of 47.8%": Social-emotional and data reasoning in middle school students' comics about friendship. In Proceedings of the 2022 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems. ACM.