Discovery Images Help Teach Students to Make Inferences

What biome might this be? Who committed the crime in this mystery novel? What can you infer about this era in history from the artifacts found at an archeological dig? These are just a few of the ways in which the ability to infer is important in school. As a firm believer in using visual media to teach skills prior to asking students to apply the same skill or strategy with written text, I was thrilled to learn about Thinglink at the recent MassCUE conference.

Thinglink allows one to import a picture and then link written text, images, or videos to various places on the picture. Thinglink‘s gallery shows examples of a picture of a famous person with information about the person linked or pictures of past presidents that students need to identify as well as many other options.

I chose to download a picture from Discovery Education and modeled how I could make observations about the picture in hopes of helping me infer its location. I then linked a Discovery video that would tell the student the location of the picture as well as additional information about what they were seeing. (Students would need to log on to their Discovery account to see the video.) This will be a great way to teach the skill of making good inferences by finding evidence as well as incorporating a different content area.
(Previously posted on my personal blog: Reading and Technology)