Making Inferences Worksheets

Related ELA Standard: RL.4.2

Core Standard

Inferences are decisions or deductions that you make when you have a good set of primary evidence to base it on. An inference is not subjective or an opinion to any level. You need plenty of cold hard facts to reach a level where you are highly confident to infer anything. I often ask students to underline key facts in whatever they are reading. This allows them to revisit what they have read and compile layers of evidentiary pieces to mount an inference. These worksheets will help students begin to understand the process of leaning into facts and making decisions based on those facts.

Steps to Making Solid Inferences

When you are presented with a question or argument you have to prepare to tackle it is always good to make inferences rather than guesses. Inferences are objective and it is hard to argue against facts. The first step you should take is to make sure that you understand the question or argument that you working with. Many students try to answer questions that they do not understand. Ask yourself if you could completely explain this to someone else, if so it's time to go after the answer and some facts to help us along. You can start by breaking the reading into pieces. Highlighters are a huge help in this stage of the process. Highlight or underline any facts you come across when viewing this material. Save this material for when you compose your thoughts into a writing or speech.

Now that you found your evidence it is time to put this to use. Review all of the evidence you have found and see if there is some sort of pattern or group that the evidence follows. Lump those pieces of evidence that are similar together. The final and most important goal is to piece these facts to help you frame your argument. You need to present the facts in a way that backs each of your assertions.

How to Make Inferences from What You Read?

While reading, readers follow a systematic approach and use the knowledge they have from the text to make a guess about what has not been mentioned directly. This practice of reading between the lines is generally known as making inferences from the text. This process is a bit critical, but becomes easy with regular practice.

It requires the readers to use their past experiences and clues from whatever they have read from the text to answer a specific questions related to it. Making inferences is a very useful technique as it not only develops strong critical thinking skills, but also makes it easy to memorize the text one has read. Here is a five-step method that can make the process of making inferences from whatever you read easier than ever:

Read the Text Carefully

The first step is to read whatever has been given to you with absolute care and keenness without missing any minor detail. Read a paragraph twice if necessary and make sure you understand all of it.

Understand the Question

Inferences help find answers to specific questions. It is essential to understand the question with precision and accuracy otherwise all the efforts made during reading can go to waste.

List the Applicable Information

After understanding the question, it is better to make a list of all the points from the text that can help you construct an answer for the question being asked.

Locate the Relational Patterns Between the Details

Once you have collected all the necessary details, try to mark the patterns and relations between all those points.

Analyze the Relations and Patterns

The last step is to infer whatever information is needed by analyzing the patterns. This can take you to a plausible answer to the question being asked.

How to Make Inferences

Making inferences about an idea, sentence, a phrase or even a word is something everyone does while reading without even knowing. Making inferences is the technique to use your previous knowledge to guess what will happen next. While reading, one needs to make inferences as it will help to enjoy reading and to make one able to read in between lines. Making inferences is not easy and it is the duty of teachers and parents to teach a child from the very beginning about the ways that can help him or her in making inferences. Here are the most useful and efficient ways to do that:

Reading Carefully

To make inferences, one must read the content carefully to have a full understanding of what is being said. Try to grab the main idea and the message of the content. This will help you in making inferences easily and accurately.

Using Previous Knowledge

Most of the times, using previous knowledge while reading something can make it easy to guess the real meaning of that particular word or phrase. Relying on your previous knowledge to understand the meaning of something in context is a very efficient technique and is likely to help the readers in making correct inferences from the context.

Using Context

Most of the times, the context of the word, phrase or sentence to be inferred is fully explaining its meaning. Therefore, one must read and re-read the context of a phrase carefully till he or she can fully grab some clues that will help him or her to infer the meaning.

Using Thesaurus

To make inferences, it is always advised to keep a thesaurus with you. For the words that cannot be inferred with the help of previous knowledge, use a thesaurus to understand the meaning of that word and then proceed with the other inferencing techniques.









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