One more thing before I continue onto my post. My latest March/April newsletter is up and ready to download. Just click the owl in the right sidebar saying, "Click here to see my newsletters!" and it will take you to Issue #5. A special thank you to Em of Curious Firsties for her guest article on the NIM strategy. You may have read about it on the Adventures In Literacy Land blog. It's an important fluency strategy for struggling readers, so be sure to check it out.
I thought this was an appropriate topic this week since many of my friends and family are making predictions on what the gender, and weight of the baby will be. Those predictions are based on their own background, their relationship with me, my size (!), and a few old wives' tales mixed in to make things more interesting.
When we ask our budding readers to make and/or confirm predictions before, during and even after reading a book, it's important to model how to make an informed prediction, based on several things. I often say to my students that prediction is inference's cousin. With predictions, we can mostly rely on the text to answer the whether our predictions may be confirmed or not. An inference may not be as explicit. Check out this slideshare for more on distinguishing between the two strategies. When we predict or make an educated guess, we use...
- Our background knowledge
- The pictures
- The title
- New vocabulary
- Events in the plot along the way.
~My Mentor Text~
The book I have chosen this week to highlight this reading strategy is The Wednesday Surprise by Eve Bunting. This is a great book to use in September when you're establishing your Reader's Workshop routines and drumming up excitement for reading. I can't think of a more perfect book for modeling this strategy. When you think surprise, you automatically predict! Anna and her Grandma are working on a special surprise for Dad's birthday every Wednesday night until he comes home from his job as a truck driver. I won't give away what the surprise is if you haven't read it yet, but it is so precious.
My thirds read this every year as the first book we did in our Eve Bunting author study. We made a chart that asked them to predict what the surprise might be at key points in the plot. Eve really keeps the reader wondering even up until the very end. After filling in the chart with our predictions, we would go back and see how close we were to confirming them. Prediction making while reading, of course, aren't setting out to see who's right and who's wrong.
I will be back blogging hopefully by early April. Please welcome my guests throughout the month of March. Thank you!