Inferencing Skills

by stryson

Inferencing and drawing conclusions are incredibly difficult to teach, but I’m trying to make them fun for my students.  Here are two ideas I’ve been working with:

Guess The Holiday

I passed out an index card with  a holiday name written on it to each of the students. (I stretched for some “holidays.” It’d be more accurate to call them “special days,” since I included first & last day of school, birthday, etc.)  One by one, they took turns coming up to tell the class about their day, without mentioning the holiday.  The rest of the class had to guess what holiday they had.  Some were easy; Christmas was guessed almost immediately.  Last day of school and April Fool’s were middling in difficulty, and the kids really struggled with Easter – though that had more to do with the “it” student’s expressive language abilities more than anything.  All in all, the kids had fun with this, and it made them think.

Describe the Person

Next week (once standardized testing is done), I am doing this activity with my students.  First, I am going to bring in several bags – a backpack, a duffel bag, a grocery bag.  Each is going to have several objects inside.  The kids will have to describe the fictional owner of the bag based on what they know from those objects.  I’ve never tried this activity before; I’ll report on how it goes.

Anyone have other good ideas for inferencing activities?  The more game-like they are or seem, the better.

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