We can also use text clues and our background knowledge to solve unknown words. Room 221 readers looked at the cover of the book "Gumption!." We looked carefully at the illustrations on the cover and made some smart guesses about the meaning of the word gumption. As we continued our way through the book, the word gumption was repeated five times. Each time, we used our background knowledge and the text clues to infer the meaning of the word. At the end of the story, third grade thinkers were asked to make their final inference. They wrote, "I think gumption means ___________________ because...." They explained their thinking using evidence from the text.
Be sure to ask your third grader about their inference. Don't forget to ask them the "dictionary" meaning of the word!