# Ordered Pairs Teaching Resources

Bring ordered pairs instruction into your math class with printable worksheets, input-output tables, coordinate grids and more engaging teaching resources created for teaching students dot plotting in an elementary classroom.

Explore editable resources you can easily differentiate for individual learners, plus math center activities and fun games to help students understand how to graph points on a coordinate plane.

This collection of Common Core curriculum-aligned printable and digital resources has been created just for teachers by the teachers on the Teach Starter team. That means each resource has undergone an in-depth review before publication to ensure it's ready for the classroom and your lesson plans!

New to teaching this section of the math curriculum? Read on for a guide to ordered pairs from our teacher team!

## What Is an Ordered Pair? A Kid-Friendly Definition

When it comes to introducing ordered pairs to your math students, how do you explain it? How about using this simple ordered pair definition?

An ordered pair is a pair of numbers written in a specific order — with a comma between them and parentheses on either side — that we can use to find a specific point on a graph. They're sort of like the coordinates that we use on a map to find a particular place!

**The first number in the ordered pair**tells us how far to move left or right from a special point on the graph called the origin.**The second number in the ordered pair**tells us how far to move up or down from the origin.

Essentially, an ordered pair is our guide to plotting dots on a graph!

## Ordered Pair Example

Let's put these numbers in action with an example!

Let's say you have the ordered pair (4, 2).

This tells us you will move 4 spaces to the right of the origin and 2 spaces up from the origin to find a specific point on the graph. Take a look at the image below, and you'll see how the ordered pair told us where to graph this dot!

## What Is the Origin on a Coordinate Plane?

The ordered pair example above shows the origin on a coordinate plane, but let's dig a little bit more into this!

The origin is the point on a coordinate plane where the x-axis and y-axis intersect. It's represented by the ordered pair (0,0).

## What Is the Cartesian Coordinate System?

Ordered pairs play a crucial role in something called the Cartesian Coordinate System — it's why we sometimes call coordinate planes Cartesian planes.

So what is the Cartesian coordinate system, and who is it named for?

French mathematician and philosopher René Descartes created the Cartesian coordinate system way back in the 17th century. The two-dimensional coordinate system is the one we use today in elementary schools (and beyond!) to locate points on a plane.

The Cartesian coordinate system consists of two perpendicular lines — called the x-axis and y-axis — that intersect at the point described above as the origin.

Each coordinate plane in the system is then set up in the following way:

- The x-axis is the horizontal line, and the y-axis is the vertical line.
- Points in the plane are represented by ordered pairs (x, y) where x is the distance from the origin along the x-axis, and y is the distance from the origin along the y-axis.
- The ordered pair (0,0) represents the origin, where the x-axis and y-axis intersect.
- Positive values of x represent points to the right of the origin on the x-axis.
- Negative values of x represent points to the left of the origin.
- Positive values of y represent points above the origin on the y-axis.
- Negative values of y represent points below the origin.

The Cartesian coordinate system is used well beyond elementary school math class! You'll find it in many branches of mathematics, as well as in science, engineering and other fields involving spatial relationship analysis. Because it provides a way to represent and analyze data in two dimensions, it's considered an essential tool for understanding geometry, algebra and calculus.

- Free Plan
### Battleship Coordinate Grid Game

Practice using ordered pairs with this fun battleship game.

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### Graphing Using Input-Output Tables – Differentiated Worksheets

Use data from input-output tables to graph points with this set of differentiated worksheets.

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### Coordinate Grid Mystery Pictures

Practice graphing ordered pairs with this set of differentiated coordinate grid mystery pictures.

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### Ordered Pairs Match-Up

Practice plotting ordered pairs and describing the process for graphing with this match-up activity.

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### Equations, Tables, and Graphs, Oh My! – Differentiated Worksheets

Use these differentiated worksheets to practice using equations to create patterns within input-output tables and graphs.

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### Input-Output Tables & Graphing – Task Cards

Practice reading input-output tables and plotting points in the first quadrant with this set of task cards.

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### Creating Ordered Pairs From Input-Output Tables – Worksheet

Create ordered pairs from an input-output table and determine the rule for each table with this worksheet.

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### Valentine's Day Coordinate Plane Graphing

Plot 18 ordered pairs to reveal a surprise Valentine’s Day picture.

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### Drawing With Ordered Pairs - Rocket

Students create a rocket ship by plotting a set of ordered pairs.

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### Drawing With Ordered Pairs - House

Students create a house by plotting a set of ordered pairs.

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### Drawing With Ordered Pairs - Lion

Students create a lion by plotting a set of ordered pairs.

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### Understand Sequence Poster

A poster highlighting how to sequence when reading a piece of text.