Inferring Meaning From Text Events

11 teachers like this lesson
Print Lesson


SWBAT...quote accurately from a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text in "How Many Days to America"

Big Idea

Reading between the lines helps us to understand ALL that is going on in the story. We will create a chart to share our inferences and text evidence.

Shared Discussion

20 minutes

We begin by sharing their problem solution charts. I ask why the family didn't give up? What were the alternative choices? What were the consequences of these choices? 

In that we are getting to the end of the unit on this book and we have evaluated the basic level questions on it - I now want to push students to question deeper and to infer more meaning into the story events

I bring up them back to the page when the little sister keeps asking questions (pg 12) and then have them read the last sentences on page 15. I ask why did her father just say "more my small one?" and then ask "did this answer her question?" After they respond I ask them what was the author trying to show/say when she wrote " I saw him look at my mother over our heads." I told them that good readers read between the lines, or infer, to determine more meanings from stories they read. In this video you can see an example of how I question students and then prompt them with further questioning to help them think through their responses even more.

Here I attached a video of the ways I question and then push student's even more to evaluate and infer events in the text. They always surprise me with their insightfulness!   


I continue the questioning around the table to ensure all are involved and building understanding from the conversation. 

Vocabulary Lesson

10 minutes

In this lesson I share that often authors don't use individual words, but rather short figurative phrases to bring meaning to a passage. I share that we are going to decipher the meaning of some phrases from the story to determine what they mean or symbolize. Here's the link to the phrases and figurative language I had students identify from the story. 

I feel it is important for students to learn both vocabulary and figurative language strategies in these small groups. If I don't have a day dedicated to a figurative language lesson, then I often substitute this lesson in the time slot I would regularly do vocabulary work.  

Take Away Assignment

10 minutes

In this section I had students respond to text questions with evidence to not only give me an idea of how well they are comprehending the story events but also to address the Common Core expectation that students support their responses with evidence from the text.

I review with them how to do this and have them refer back to their Show Me Evidence sentence starter charts. I ask them "Why is it important for us to show evidence for our answers?" and then have them think evaluate further by asking "How does finding evidence help you, the responders?', "How does it help me, the evaluator?" I want them to learn that this helps them as much or more than it helps me because it forces them to look for the correct response because they are being asked to back up what they feel (opinions) with facts (evidence)).

We then read and review the expectations for the take away questions and answer any questions they might have - and they are released to apply what they just learned!