Step 1: Pictures
I ask the student questions like:
“How is the person feeling in this picture?”
“How do you know that? There aren’t any words in the picture to tell you that, what made you think that?”
Or….“Why do you think this person is wearing a scarf and hat?” If the student answers, “because it is cold,” I say, “How do you know it is cold?”
I use who, what, where when and why questions with each picture.
Then….I let the student hold the picture and ask ME questions using each of the ‘wh’ words. I use this opportunity to model good answers.
I also discuss clues and evidence with the student. Finding clues to support the inference is the goal of this activity.
Step 2: Graphic Organizer
Step 3: Inference Riddles
“I am smaller than the earth. I reflect light from the sun. I orbit around the earth. My pull affects ocean tides. Neil Armstrong visited me. What am I?” (moon)
“I am known for my large size. My nickname is the Lone Star State. I was once my own country. I have many miles of beaches. My capital is Austin. What am I?” (Texas)
We take turns and I give my student an opportunity to come up with a riddle as well so that the student has to think of clues to give me without naming the person, place or thing.
This is a really fun and engaging activity to help students review and practice the concept of inferencing.
Step 4: Write a Story
Then, I ask my student to write a story. This is similar to the riddle game but includes a longer, more detailed creative story that the student will need to write down on paper.
“You are going to write a story about a very cold afternoon without saying that it is cold. Use lots of clues so that the reader can infer that it is cold.”
“You are going to write a story about somewhere that is very scary without saying that this place is scary. Use lots of clues so that the reader can infer that this is a scary place.”
Step 5: Read a Story
As we are reading the story together, I use prompts to help my student understand what the author is implying in the story. Some examples of prompts I use during reading are:
What is the message/lesson of this story?
What can you figure out that the author did not put in words?
What can you conclude about…..?
What is the mood/tone of the story?
Why do you think the author chose that setting? Why was this setting important to the story?
Why do you think the character…..?
What do the character’s actions/choices tell you about him/her?
When the character said…..What did he/she really mean?
I hope that this Lesson Plan gave you some good ideas and strategies that you can implement with your student.
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Check out the PRIDE Reading Program Comprehension Home Program and Digital Program. This program is designed to help your student learn to build reading comprehension skills with important strategies such as sequencing, predicting, visualizing, inferencing, and summarizing.
Thank you for reading my post today!
Karina Richland, M.A., is the author of the PRIDE Reading Program, a multisensory Orton-Gillingham reading, writing and comprehension curriculum that is available worldwide for parents, tutors, teachers and homeschoolers of struggling readers. Karina has an extensive background in working with students of all ages and various learning modalities. She has spent many years researching learning differences and differentiated teaching practices. You can reach her by email at email@example.com or visit the website at www.pridereadingprogram.com