Bar graphs and histograms look similar, and people often use the terms interchangeably, but they are not the same kind of graph.

Bar graphs (also called bar charts) are one of the first kinds of graphs young students learn to make. They are useful to show total counts or total amounts of something (such as total monthly rainfall). Histograms are a kind of frequency plot, and are introduced in the Common Core Math Standards in sixth grade, when students begin to think about groups and variability.

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