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SWBAT understand how text features provide important information about a topic.

Big Idea

This lesson has some awesome pictures and is full of interesting facts that will keep the class motivated for a long time.


10 minutes

Common Core Connection

I teach RI1.5 by looking at the author's reasons for designing the text.  The captions, heading, and subheading present the information about the topic. I am aware RI1.5 states students should know glossary, headings, table of contents, electronic menus, and icons. I decided to include captions and subheadings because we are at the end of the year. Captions and subheadings are in the second grade part to this standard.

Lesson Overview

We create a Caption, Bold Word, Headings Chart together analyzing the text features in the first three slides of the text. Then the students work with a partner to fill in the graphic organizer. This is an article from my Equus magazine. I am aware that the text complexity is a little much for first graders, but I scaffold it by reading it aloud prior to analyzing. Most of the words in the text features are readable by my students.

The students work with Peanut Butter Jelly Partners throughout the lesson, but they do  Transitions several times to stay energized.  I have a video on both of these strategies in the resource section.

Introductory Activity

I display the first slide of the Helmets PowerPoint. To engage my class I ask the students to discuss why the author chose to use the text feature.  I am just trying to get the class thinking about text features and the author's craft.    When they are talking and becoming excited about the lesson I assess their knowledge by listening to their conversations.

Then I share the lesson plan because I find my students appreciate knowing what is going to happen in our lesson.  Then we chant the lesson goal just to focus the class on the goal.

Guided Practice

20 minutes

The students analyze each of the three text features with their partner, then one volunteer shares and we have have a class discussion. Then they discuss why the author chose that text feature. Somebody shares, we agree, disagree, and discuss their thoughts. Then I add the comments to the Board Work (chart), which is the same one the students use and it is in the resources.

So, we analyze each of these text features from the slides.

1. Caption, slide 1

2. Title, slide 2

3. Caption, slide 3

Partner Work

20 minutes

The students analyze three more text features with their partner and fill in the chart. We usually do the partner work section at center tables, but the slides are on the Smart Board, so I just zoom in on the Board for each one at a time.

Student Reflection

5 minutes

This is the most complex time when students are practicing their speaking and listening skills. Several students share their work, but other students have to give an evaluation of their peers' work. Sometimes they need me to model a few evaluations, but this is one of our last lesson on text features. So, I expect my students to have very specific comments, agree, disagree, and justify their ideas.


5 minutes

At this point I need to do some formative assessment so I can see what each child knows about text features. I ask the partners to discuss how text features help authors present information. Hopefully, they will say they add information about the picture or tell you what a section of text will be about. But, I listen and share what they say. Then I add that I hope they learned what I mentioned earlier.

Then we chant the lesson goal to reiterate the focus of the lesson.