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Text Features Teacher Resources
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How do novels differ from plays? Explore with your class the text features of fiction and drama by reading The Hidden One: Native American Legend and then performing a reader’s theater script based on the story. Class members create a story map outlining characters, setting, and major events in the book. Next, they discuss how these items are presented in the drama. In addition, they examine the text features unique to each genre.
Make learning the parts of a book fun by having pupils construct their own glossary entries, table of contents, and title page. Beginning with a review of text features and a hunt for examples, kids use previously written fables to create a title and glossary entry that is then included in a class anthology of fables. A rubric is included.
Investigate rocks and non-fiction reading strategies. The class observes and sorts rocks, and then identifies non-fiction text features in Remarkable Rocks. Given strips of paper labeled with headings from the table of contents, pupils read the book independently and place the labels over corresponding text. They take notes on one book section and share what they learned with the group.
Increase non-fiction reading comprehension by completing a pre-reading organizer to identify the non-fiction text features and also making comparisons to features of fictional books. To prepare for reading a non-fiction selection, learners engage in think-aloud strategies and prediction. They then read the selection, paying attention to the text features and to the way pictures and other graphics inform the meaning.
Bring the characteristics of a feature article to light for the class. Look at examples in magazines and pick out the characteristics of the text that grab attention. Also discuss how they can choose photographs and use a strong voice to grab the reader's attention. An extension has learners comparing two feature articles side-by-side, but another excellent extension would be having burgeoning writers compose their own feature article.
Although the article that launches this lesson plan is about the history of the Periodic Table, the objective is reading comprehension. Using the eight-page informational text, learners answer five comprehension questions and craft one essay. They utilize text features such as headings and graphics to more efficiently move through the questions, and mark the text as they read to note important facts. This is also a great way to teach vocabulary in context and text features. The reading is not difficult or long.
Identify text features, make inferences, and discover the cultural significance of Native American Poetry. Sixth graders read several Native American poems and use graphic organizers and literature response logs to record their feelings and inferences made about the poetry.
Students explore nonfiction text features. For this Menasha, Wisconsin geography and nonfiction comprehension lesson, students share phrases for the "K" and "W" portion of a KWL chart about Menasha. Students complete a KWL chart with a partner while researching a Menasha website. Students locate nonfiction text features within the website, note them on Post-it notes, and share their findings with the class.