I read the book The Rain Came Down by David Shannon to a first grade class today. It’s a fun book about a town that goes a little haywire because of rain. At one point in the story the traffic is blocked, cars are lined up, there is yelling and honking, and we are told “a woman squirmed in the back of a taxi.”
I asked the first graders what the word squirmed meant and they all demonstrated squirming. Good. “Yes, it’s like you have ants in your pants!” I said.
Then I asked why the woman might be squirming. Someone thought she might be mad. Now we were onto something! Inference…predicting…higher level thinking here we come!
“Mad about what?” I asked. I held my breath, waiting for the answer.
“Mad about the ants in her pants!” was the first grader’s reply.