The Coordinate Plane-Quadrant 1

Contributor: Erika Wargo. Lesson ID: 12786

Do you feel uncoordinated when it comes to finding locations on a map? Coordinate grids are like maps, and learning how to use them is really simple. Study, sing and play your way to quadrant quality!



learning style
personality style
Grade Level
Intermediate (3-5), Middle School (6-8)
Lesson Type
Quick Query

Lesson Plan - Get It!

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Imagine a time when you couldn’t find something that was really important, like a book in the bookstore, or the place where you were supposed to meet your friends.

  • Could you have used a map to help you?

Pretend it is the end of summer and you want to bury a time capsule full of memories.

  • How would a coordinate grid help you plot the exact location of your time capsule?
  • How could you use a coordinate grid to help others find your time capsule in the future?

If you created a map using a coordinate plane, you could provide specific directions to your time capsule!

A coordinate plane contains a vertical number line called the y-axis and a horizontal number line called the x-axis. These two number lines intersect and create four distinct areas called quadrants.

This lesson will discuss how to name a point on a coordinate grid and how to place a point using a given ordered pair in Quadrant One of a coordinate plane.

Before you begin, watch Using a Coordinate Grid | PBS LearningMedia, from Julie Rothbard, and pay attention to how the CyberSquad uses their maps:

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  • How do the students use a coordinate grid?

The students used a grid to help them find locations. Before you can bury your time capsule, you will need to learn the basics of using a grid on a coordinate plane.

This lesson will focus on Quadrant One of a coordinate plane.

To learn about quadrant one of a coordinate plane, watch Coordinate Planes: Plotting Points on a One Quadrant Graph from Real Math Solutions:

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Now, try to answer the following questions before clicking on each to see if you were correct.

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Before you move on, take a moment to review some important words that will help you today:


The x-axis is the line on a graph that runs horizontally (left-right) through 0.


The y-axis is the line on a graph that runs vertically (up-down) through 0.

ordered pair

An ordered pair is two numbers written in a certain order to identify a location on a coordinate grid usually written in parentheses like this: (4,5).

The "x" (horizontal) value is first, and the "y" (vertical) value is second.


The origin is the starting point when plotting ordered pairs.

It is the point (0,0) on a coordinate grid.

coordinate plane

The coordinate plane contains the "x" axis and "y" axis.

Keep reading to see how you name a point on a coordinate grid.

The x-axis is the line that runs horizontally (left-right) through 0 on the grid.

The y-axis is the line that runs vertically (up-down) through 0 on the grid.

Ordered pairs are used to name and place points. The first number is the x-coordinate, and the second number is the y-coordinate.

The x-coordinate tells how many to count to the right from the origin. The y-coordinate tells how many to count up.

Take a look at an example:

coordinate grid

Point A is at (3,2). Notice how the value of x is 3, which is the distance to the right from the origin. The value of y is 2, which is the distance up from the origin.

Now, place a point using a given ordered pair.

  • If we wanted to plot the ordered pair (5,4), where would we start?

If you said start at the origin (0,0), you’re right. Since the x-coordinate is 5, count 5 units to the right. Since the y-coordinate is 4, count 4 units up. Put a point where the two lines intersect.

  • Not ready to practice yet?

That’s OK. Review with the Step-By-Step Ordered Pairs activity by Scholastic Study Jams!

  • Do you think you are ready to create your own map using a coordinate plane?

Go on to the Got It? section to practice and prepare to map out your time capsule!

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