Inferences: Learning How to Make Them

Inferences:  Learning How to Make Them

…. It seemed that the pitch had barely left the southpaw’s hand when the ballpark resounded with a loud thwack. Morgan dropped his head in dejection as Ramirez began to trot the bases ….

What just happened here? Some readers will respond that the above passage is obviously a familiar baseball scenario – a misguided pitch that has been hit into a home run. But how do we know this? How can we tell that the passage is about baseball and that the event that has just transpired is the belting of a home run?

This short two-sentence passage is deceptively complex for readers. The author implies a number of things without directly stating them. In addition to picking up clues that refer to baseball, a reader must also figure out the identities of the pitcher and the batter. Finally, the reader must recognize the hint about how the pitcher felt about serving up the home run.

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