Different Routes to the Same Destination: Drawing Conclusions With Tiered Graphic Organizers


E-mail mcmackin@lesley.edu.

E-mail nwitherell@bridgew.edu.


The ability to draw conclusions while reading is an important comprehension skill. It requires readers to connect background knowledge and experiences with information in the text in order to go beyond the literal meaning of words on the page. Even with careful teaching, this skill, like most others, needs to be reinforced at different levels of complexity if children are to grow and develop at the most effective pace. In any class, for example, some students will have no difficulty drawing conclusions; in fact, they will need to be challenged if they are to extend what they already know about making inferences. Other students will be able to draw conclusions successfully with some instruction. Most likely, there will be some who will need a great deal of support in order to flourish independently. In this article, the authors demystify what readers do when they draw conclusions, define tiered graphic organizers, supply guidelines for creating these graphic organizers, and provide examples of them for drawing conclusions with upper elementary-grade students.