How Many Kids We Have and When We Have Them

A few years ago, it seemed like everyone I knew was having babies or trying to have babies. There were baby showers, baby gifts, baby visits, and of course the social feeds were filled with baby pictures. My wife and I also had a couple of kids.

But now that I’m older, it feels more like a trickle. Many parents stop at two kids. Most are done by three. Still, everyone has their own timelines.


The chart above shows 1,000 timelines, based on data from the National Survey of Family Growth. Each moving dot is a mother. Age is on the horizontal, and with each live birth, the dot moves down a notch. The green bubbles represent the total counts for a given age.

You see the distribution for the first child clump up around mothers’ twenties, and the distributions shift older for additional kids.

There’s so much variation though in when people have kids and how many. I mean, 12 kids? Whoa. To each her own.

See also: Baby-Making Age and After Marriage, How Long People Wait to Have Kids.


Notes

  • I pulled the data from the 2015-2017 release of the National Survey of Family Growth, which is run by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It’s been running on and off since 1973. For the interactive, I took a weighted sample of 1,000 cases.
  • I analyzed and prepared the data in R.
  • I made the chart using D3.js.

Become a member. Learn to visualize data. From beginner to advanced.

Join Today

Membership

This is for people interested in the process of creating, designing, and exploring data graphics. Your support goes directly to FlowingData, an independently run site.

What You Get

  • Instant access to tutorials on how to make and design data graphics
  • Source code and files to use with your own data
  • In-depth courses on visualization in R
  • Hand-picked links and resources from around the web
  • Members-only newsletter

Favorites

Top Brewery Road Trip, Routed Algorithmically

There are a lot of great craft breweries in the United States, but there is only so much time. This is the computed best way to get to the top rated breweries and how to maximize the beer tasting experience. Every journey begins with a single sip.

Reviving the Statistical Atlas of the United States with New Data

Due to budget cuts, there is no plan for an updated atlas. So I recreated the original 1870 Atlas using today’s publicly available data.

Data, R, and a 3-D Printer

We almost always look at data through a screen. It’s quick and good for exploration. So is there value in making data physical? I played around with a 3-D printer to find out.

Cuisine Ingredients

What are the ingredients that make each cuisine? I looked at 40,000 recipes spanning 20 cuisines and 6,714 ingredients to see what makes food taste different.