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Building Reading: Making the Most of Your Non-Fiction Passages

Welcome back to our Building Back to School Linky Series! If you’ve missed any of the previous weeks, you can catch up with them here:

This week, I’m linking up with some fabulous bloggers to bring you some Tools for READING!

This year, in response to the still new Common Core Initiative & in an effort to meet teacher needs for convenient & CCSS aligned materials, I’ve put a huge focus on planning and creating informational text practice.

I know that, particularly in primary classrooms, informational text is often still on the back burner. It can be overwhelming! Where do you start? What does a lesson look like? What are our goals?

Below is a list of simple, no-prep ideas to assist you as you guide your students OF ANY AGE through your next informational text!

Before you read:
  • Preview the Questions. Discuss with your students what they already know. Read the questions, predict answers and discuss why or how they came to these predictions. If you’re using my primary texts or any other half page spreads, it’s easy to fold the page in half backward & focus on the question side.
  • Circle or highlight key words for identifying information. Clarify what the questions are asking and what type of information you are looking for.

This page is from my September Informational Text Pack
  • Consider voting on predictions. You might ask a student to share his prediction and why, then use a show of hands to count how many students agree with his thought process or conclusion. Allow another student to make a contradictory opinion and explain his reasoning.
  • Make a KWL for the topic. You can do this as a whole group or in small groups. Discuss what the students already know and what they hope to discover during their reading.

Passage from Abe Lincoln Comprehension & GO pack; KWL from KWL pack.
  • Have students {individually or in pairs} indiscreetly mark their predictions. Using your questions in this manner is similar to an anticipation guide and helps engage your students in the reading.

While you read:
  • Highlight important key words identified. Encourage your students to pay attention for words that remind them of a question or indicate important information.
  • Make a game of identifying the key words circled before they read. Possibly explain to the students that if they see one of these key words, they should stand as fast as they can!

This page is from my September Informational Text Pack
  • Stop every couple of sentences and summarize or clarify what you’re reading. Ask the students what they’ve learned so far or if they’ve discovered any important information. For very low students, you may even ask the previewed comprehension questions verbatim. Using the exact same language repeatedly will trigger their memory & help make connections.

After you read:
  • Re-read the questions. Then go back through the passage and highlight/underline specific evidence to support their answers.

Pages from Abe Lincoln Reading Comprehension & Graphic Organizer Pack
  • Discuss what was predicted vs. learned. Celebrate correctly predicted answers as well as information learned! We should make a big deal out of attaining new knowledge!
  • Make a list of follow up questions or comments; note things the students wonder now that they have some information.
  • Complete your KWL if you started one.

Easy as that! I hope you found a new idea or two for attacking informational texts in your room!

And now for our weekly deal & giveaway! WOO!

I JUST put the finishing touches on my September Primary Informational Text Pack. This pack has 6 informational texts on: Labor Day, Football, Johnny Appleseed, Rosh Hashanah, Apples, & The Constitution! To win this pack and some other fun goodies from some generous TPT bloggers, simply enter the Rafflecopter below!

Don’t want to wait for the giveaway? That’s fine too! This week, in my store, ALL of my reading comprehension, informational text, & literacy packs are on sale! Most of these are on the list to receive a face lift (or recently have) so don’t miss out on the deal! And make sure to follow me on Facebook, Instagram, and BlogLovin’ so you know when packs have been updated!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
2 comments on "Building Reading: Making the Most of Your Non-Fiction Passages"
  1. Wow! What a great post on informational text! :) Looks like a GREAT pack.
    Sarah :)

  2. Love this! I started using more non-fiction passages last year and focusing on going back to highlight to "prove" their great for kids and they actually loved looking for their text clues to the answers! :) These products look great!

    The First Grade Roundup