I found a good book to help my students learn how good readers make inferences. I used it to reinforce the idea that pictures can help us infer meaning and text can help us infer meaning. I Want My Hat Back by Jon Klassen is a wonderfully unique book with a surprise ending (spoiler alert - the rabbit does not make it).
One reason that I like it is that it appeals to certain students that may not be engaged in other books. To be honest the first time that I read it, I was a little troubled by the ending. There is not too much text in this book, so many first graders can read it. The author did an amazing job of conveying his message with simple yet precise text.
When I heard that Jon Klassen's book, This Is Not My Hat, won the Caldecott, I had to get it. In this slightly dark tale, a tiny fish steals a hat knowing that it is wrong. My students started making inferences about the ending right away! They even were making inferences about the author's message.
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