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Best Practices: Teaching with Nonfiction

Day 4: Teach Text Structure & Reread the Selection

Students will:
  • Gain an awareness and general understanding what text structures are
  • Learn what clues they can use to identify the text structure of a piece of writing



Step 1: Use the Five Text Structures chart to explain what text structures are and what clues students can use to identify text structures.

Step 2: Help students understand the importance of understanding text structure by explaining that a reader who is aware of the patterns that are being used can anticipate the kind of information that will be presented.

Example: If we we know a selection follows a “compare and contrast” organization, we can expect to read about likeness and differences between people or things. This will help us connect ideas and remember them.

Step 3: Have students reread “ Stopping a Toppling Tower.”

Step 4: Ask students to identify what type text structure this selection is ( problem and solution ). Ask them, “How does the reader know?” They should be able to identify that the first paragraph states that there is a “problem.” The second paragraph states that engineers have found a “solution.” What headings offered clues?

Day 1: What's Special About Nonfiction?
Day 2: Prepare to Read
Day 3: Teach Text Features & Read the Selection
Day 4: Teach Text Structure & Reread the Selection
Day 5: Check Comprehension & Apply Writing

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Nonfiction Home | 6 Reasons | 5-Day Unit Plan | 4 Sources
3 Comprehension Strategies | 2 Ideas | 1-on-1