Students are better at inference than they get credit for. Their problem often lies in ordering and expressing their thoughts – not the inference itself.
I use this structure to help students talk and write about their inferences of both texts and images.
We go through this one stage at a time:
- First, students talk about what they see in the image or text, they’re not allowed to infer or use prior knowledge at all – only observations that are explicitly there.
- Then, we talk about the questions the text raises in our minds. This would normally be discussed as a class or in small groups.
- Finally, using evidence, students share and discuss their theories – “what do you think is going on?”
This is the sort of resource I’ll use again and again throughout the year – I’ve just sent it to repro to print 200!
Give it a try and see how it works with your classes.