Grade Levels: K-3

These classroom activities are designed to complement the Make Inferences topic on BrainPOP Jr.

Silent Film
Explain to students that they make inferences not just when they read, but when they watch people perform. If possible, show a television program without sound and see if students can follow some of the plot and understand the characters. What details helped them figure out how the characters feel? How did facial expressions and body language help them understand the show?

As an extension, break up the class into small groups and have them write silent skits. Groups can come up with a plot idea and perform them in front of the class. As a bonus, you could film the performances and make your own silent films. Have audience members discuss each film and describe what details helped them figure out what happened.

Animal Facts

As a science connection, read several nonfiction books about animals. Have students pick out specific details about each animal, such as their physical appearance, behavior, or other special trait, and explain how that detail helps the animal survive in its environment. Students can use specific details in the text and connect them with prior knowledge to come up with their ideas. Students can also take what they know about one animal and try to apply it to another. For example, a student may know that zebras’ stripes help confuse predators. Have him or her apply this knowledge to striped fish.

Show, Don’t Tell

Have students write short paragraphs about a personal experience. Tell them to not state any of their own emotions explicitly. Instead, have them write details that help the reader understand how the character feels. Have student volunteers share their writing and briefly discuss each piece. What details helped the reader understand the character? What other details could be added to the writing?