High Rigor and High Relevance! I can hear my assistant principal chanting this as I type it. High relevance, check! Authentic resources, target culture, and cultural comparisons help to keep the lessons relevant to their lives. High rigor… And stay in the target language??
This has been my recent mission. I observed several classes, such as Science, English, Art, and History, and I saw different examples of inference activities. Here’s a poster from Rachel Rice’s English class:
So I tried it in my class. I found that making inferences based on authentic videos and texts has pushed my students to higher level thinking while staying in the target language. Here’s a sample lesson that I did using this strategy.
We watched a music video in class, and I asked them to answer one question and list the evidence:
* Where does the video take place?
They did not figure out the exact answer, but they came up with great evidence. They listed that people wore “short sleeves,” “tropical fruit,” “bright colors on houses,” “ocean,” and “beach.” Many guessed a Caribbean place like Cuba.
Here is a graphic organizer (except it is in Spanish) that I will use next time by putting a question at the top.
My hope is that this will also strengthen their inference skills and will carry over into other contents, especially during this high stakes testing month!
What activities can you include that use inference skills?
I love it! I like taking authentic language, like Twitter posts or Spanish pop songs, and having the students infer meaning of specific phrases. They are able to use the language that they already know to try to interpret other parts. They are usually right or at least very close. It also helps them to be better listeners and readers because they begin to build their self confidence and trust themselves more.
Exactly! Evidence can be what they see or words they read.
I hadn’t really thought about how important it is for the students to infer until this post! I also realized my new warm-up series I started with Spanish I 8th graders this year is doing this. Basically I call it “Queréis ir?” and I put a picture up on the SmartBoard from ANY Spanish speaking country in the world. I put 3-4 questions in TL on board… 1. is always “quieres ir” (get them thinking about travel!) 2-3. I do something that has to do with the vocabulary. For instance when we did sports and I put a picture on the beach I asked, “Qué deportes puedes jugar en la playa?” and finally 4. is ALWAYS “dónde estamos?”. They have to infer based on their geography and culture knowledge. They get a point for city and a point for right country. We keep track and whoever has the most points by the end of a certain period gets a prize. They love it!!
Great idea! I’m going to try this!
This is great! Thanks for sharing.
This is an excellent idea for warm-ups and to get students out of their “local” mindset! Mil gracias por compartir!
Hi, can we get a link to the video? Thanks!
Sure! Please read the lyrics and watch the video before playing. I skip over one little English rap part that is questionable, but you know your students. It is “No tengo dinero” http://youtu.be/kAueSgz_MNw and I skip the first intro part so they can’t see where the video takes place. http://lyricstranslate.com/en/no-tengo-dinero-i-have-no-money.html Thanks to Yanay F. for sharing this video with me!
Dear Kara, can you please share your I know/evidence to support/I infer that handout in Spanish? or put it on TPT so I can have a copy please! This lesson is terrific to tie into our common core work here in California
Has this been uploaded to TPT yet? I would love a copy of the document too!
Not up there yet, but I’ll get it up this week. I want to change a little bit of the wording.
Finally got it up! Let me know if you have any suggestions. http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Infer-This-Spanish-and-English-graphic-organizers-for-making-inferences-1359450
French is coming soon!
Great idea!!!! I’m going to try this next week!
LOVE this! Can’t wait to use it with my students, especially with the graphic organizer for lower levels. I plan on using it in movie clips – trying to figure out when and where the movie takes place. I’ve done something similar with my students in the Families and Communities unit – I give them pictures of different people and they need to explain what they think the relationship between them is and why they think it.
Thank you! This is how I will end my year…along with Oh the places you will go…este verano:)
Love the ideas and will use these them!
What a great idea! Thank you for sharing it, I can’t wait to try it out with my students. Great way to let them think and SPEAK. Would you mind sharing the infer hand-out?
Hi, I thought that this new teacher-seller website might interest you. They are based in Canada and offer features that are not found on similar sites. They also have a lot of new features coming. Here is a link: Created by Teachers, Exclusively for Teachers
I’m a Spanish teacher in France, I don’t even know how I arrived first to your blog but thanks Google! I’ve spent more than three hours reading & copying down tons of great ideas! and I can’t wait to try them out next year. Mil gracias
What kinds of responses are you looking for students to put in the “I already know…” box during this activity?
For this video and the question “Where does this video take place?” I told them the name of the song and the artist. Most of them didn’t know anything about the artist so it was blank. Some knew that he was a singer from the Caribbean and his music style. They listed that kind of information, which did help support their inference later. Sometimes they don’t have a lot of background information, other times they know a lot. I think it’s interesting how much, or how little, they know.