Thinking Skills Activity: Interpreting Statements

INTERPRET STATEMENTS
Bob Valiant, 15 March 2004

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Thinking Skill Emphasized: INTERPRET STATEMENTS

When we are given new information it is necessary to pay close attention in order to determine its meaning.

LESSON/ACTIVITY SHEET

Activity Description:

It is easy to read too much into information, especially when it seems to confirm a previously held belief. Headlines and “sound bites” can easily lead to misinterpretation. For example, a headline that reads, “Local Teachers’ Pay Raises Triple the State Average,” might tempt the reader to believe that the raises were unreasonable. Without knowing what both local teachers made and the state average before and after the increases it is impossible to interpret the information fairly. It could be that even after the raises, local teachers were still well below the state average.

Interpret the meaning of each of the following statements and describe additional information that might be needed to avoid misinterpretation:

Washington Failing in Child Welfare

o Interpretation:

o Additional information needed:

Water and Power Supplies Look Stable

o Interpretation:

o Additional information needed:

Bushites Betray Our Troops

o Interpretation:

o Additional information needed:

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