Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Teaching Students to Make Inferences (and a freebie!)

This is quite a difficult skill for second graders to learn. I have seen so many anchor charts on the topic that it must not just be me struggling to teach it. My biggest issue is finding stories that really make it easier to make inferences. I came across the BEST book to read aloud to my class. This book actually requires kids to make inferences!
This story is told from the point of view of two ants that have invaded a human home. The author never tells the reader exactly what is going on because he uses different vocabulary. For example, the ants are in search of crystals to take back to their home. It takes the kids a few pages (and clues from the pictures) to understand that they are looking for sugar.
I started my lesson by activating their prior knowledge about ants so we could refer to it as we made inferences. As we read the story, I stopped and had the students make inferences about different parts of the story. The kids really understood how to make inferences after this awesome read aloud. Then, I assigned my Making Inferences Flip Flap Book (freebie!) to the students so they could write about the inferences they made.

I'll admit that they struggled, at first, but eventually got the hang of it. My kiddos really enjoyed the story and how it was told from the perspective of the ants. They felt like they were detectives looking for clues in the text and illustrations and using their schema to make some great inferences.
Look how much these boys were writing!


  1. What a great idea! It's so hard to find the perfect book. Thanks! -Tonya :)