Line graphs are helpful for visualizing how a variable changes over time.

Some possible data that would be displayed with a line graph:

  • average prices of gasoline over the past decade
  • weight of an individual over the past couple of months
  • average temperature along a line of longitude over different latitudes

Using Matplotlib methods, the following code will create a simple line graph using .plot() and display it using .show() :

x_values = [0, 1, 2, 3, 4] y_values = [0, 1, 4, 9, 16] plt.plot(x_values, y_values) plt.show()
  • x_values is a variable holding a list of x-values for each point on our line graph
  • y_values is a variable holding a list of y-values for each point on our line graph
  • plt is the name we have given to the Matplotlib module we have imported at the top of the code
  • plt.plot(x_values, y_values) will create the line graph
  • plt.show() will actually display the graph

Our graph would look like this:

Let’s get some practice with plotting lines.



We are going to make a simple graph representing someone’s spending on lunch over the past week. First, define two lists, days and money_spent, that contain the following integers:

DaysMoney Spent

Make sure to scroll to the bottom of the table to see all the rows of data!


Plot days on the x-axis and money_spent on the y-axis using plt.plot().


Show the plot using plt.show().

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