The central ideas in a text almost always brings readers to the purpose and lesson that is taught by the author of a text. However, there are times where central ideas and main ideas look similar to where following the cardinal rule of the main idea being located in the first sentence of the paragraph deems incorrect. In this lesson, students will become familiar with vocabulary and ways to organize main ideas of a text.
The following words are related to close reading that allows students to read and re-read informational text to understand its comprehension from beginning to end:
Central idea, Objective, Summary, Supports, Development
To start this lesson, student will use prior knowledge, a dictionary, or copy teacher-generated definitions from a Close Reading Skills Vocabulary power point to define each word. No matter which method is selected, students need to (1) understand the correct definitions of each word and (2) know how to answer questions about these concepts on assessments.
To help students understand how to answer questions about central idea, I read over the questions for "The Glowing Beagle" passage and model how to highlight important skills and/or concepts in each question. Check out my video, highlighting concepts in questions, to see which skills were assessed in comprehension questions of this reading selection.
Teachers may not want to have students conquer text-dependent questions and close-reading strategies. However, we are preparing for a high-stake test in reading so the questions are needed to provide data to continue remediation for building reading fluency and comprehension for students.
One way to build comprehension is to provide a main idea graphic organizer for students to complete after re-reading the text. Options given to students in completing the organizer can be independent, in pairs, or in a whole class setting. Either decision will allow for students to analyze the major comprehensive concepts of the passage prior to tackling the questions at the end of the passage.
I have my students work on this organizer independently. Having the seclusion of working alone allows students to rely on the text to bring new meanings to events in the story. We will share what's on our organizers at the end of this section. By having the independent then whole class discussion of the text, students can tackle easily the comprehension questions at the end of the passage.
Depending on the time left in class, there are different ways for students to share responses to the reading passage. After the completion of the graphic organizer, students work independently to answer each question. From here, we review each answer choice. The two ways that we can do this is through
Quiz and Trade
A video has been uploaded in the reflection section to share how these concepts work. Since this is the second article done in this unit, I chose for students to work on Defend Me. Check out my reflection to see how students scored on this selection.