Plotting points on the TI-83

Although plotting points is the easiest thing we do graphically, it's unfortunately one of the more complicated things we do on a graphing calculator. We have to enter the points, tell the calculator that we want it to graph some points (and only graph points), then have the calculator choose the screen and actually plot the points. With this in mind, let's start. We will plot the following points:

x |
1 |
4 |
10 |
20 |
2 |
5 |
-10 |

y |
-5 |
10 |
-2 |
0 |
15 |
-20 |
21 |

A. Entering the points

- Press the button marked STAT.
- With the blue cursors on the word EDIT and 1:Edit, press ENTER.
- Move the cursor up to where it says L1. Press the 'CLEAR' button, then press ENTER.
- Do the same for the column whose top is L2.
- Move back to the L1 column, to the spot below the very top. We may now enter in the x-values by typing them in, and pressing ENTER as we go.
- Move back to the L2 column, and enter the y-values.

B. Shutting off the function graphing.

- To 'shut-off' any of the functions you have listed, move the blue cursor over the equal sign in that row, and press 'ENTER'. Do this for each of the function spots where you have an equation.

C. Telling the calculator it needs to plot points:

- Press the yellow '2nd' button, then press the 'Y=' button (which means we really want the yellow 'STAT PLOT' above it.)
- With the cursor on 1:, press 'ENTER'.
- With the cursor on 'ON', press 'ENTER'.
- Make sure the very first item after the word 'TYPE' is selected (so we're telling the calculator that we want to plot points, and not some other strange thing.)
- Move down to the row that begins with XLIST: Since all of our x-values are in list L1, we want to put a 'L1' right there. YOU CANNOT JUST TYPE L1 AND HAVE IT WORK! You need to press the yellow '2nd' button, then press the number 1 (which means we want the yellow L1 above it.)
- Move down to the row that begins with YLIST. By following the same procedure, put an 'L2' right there.
- Move down to the bottom row, and make sure that the little square is chosen.

D. Tell the calculator to plot the points!

- Now press the ZOOM menu.
- Item 9 is ZoomStat, which is what we want. So select that, and voila!