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What Does Mode Mean in Math? - Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Mark Boster
When playing sports, eating candies, or taking tests, sometimes it is good to find the number that comes up most often. Sometimes you can just guess, but sometimes you need to make a list.

Chocolate Candies

Tara and Sharon love candy-coated chocolate candies. In the bag, there are a variety of colors, and they would like to see which colors were used most often. They found out many times there are the same number of candies of different colors. Just how many of each color is there?

Charting the Candies

When they charted the candies (or wrote down how many of each color), they found out there were five red, five green, three orange, seven blue and five brown.

mode1

If you put the numbers in order it looks like this: 3, 5, 5, 5, 7. The number of candies for each color they used the most was five. That is easy to determine because they were arranged in a list from least to most. The mode of the numbers is five. The mode is the number that is used most often in a list or set. It is easy to remember if you remember that the MOst is the MOde! See? MOde...MOst!

Charting Test Scores

mode2

Room twelve took a test to see if they could spell one hundred different words. The chart shows how many they got right. If you put the numbers in order, they are: 73, 79, 79, 79, 82, 82, 91, 91. There were three seventy-nines, two ninety-ones, two eighty-twos, and one seventy-three. When listed out like this, it is obvious that the mode is 79 because 79 came up the most.

Baseball

Karen's favorite baseball team played thirty games in one season. Here are the scores for her favorite team in each game:

3, 4, 6, 2, 3, 7, 12, 5, 8, 0, 1, 2, 10, 8, 7, 1, 0, 2, 5, 6, 5, 2, 6, 9, 5, 4, 3, 6, 2, 1

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