Teaching Information Text (RI Standards)

Discussion in 'Fourth Grade' started by OwlTeach, Mar 5, 2016.

  1. OwlTeach

    OwlTeach Rookie

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    Mar 5, 2016

    I have been focusing on informational text more and more because students score so much lower on informational text passages on their ELA tests than they do on the fiction passages. Does anyone else experience this? What can I do besides close reading, teaching text structure, and lot of practice? Does anyone have any ideas that have been working for you?
     
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  3. agdamity

    agdamity Fanatic

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    Mar 6, 2016

    Which specific standard did you want ideas for?
     
  4. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    Mar 6, 2016

    Lots of modeling/think-alouds of comprehension strategies, lots of opportunities for students to do authentic reading of informational texts (i.e. we read Scholastic News from time to time...also, they're reading books related to our SS unit, so while they're practicing comprehension and writing about their reading, it's for a purpose of understanding more about the topic...and not just random reading), and plenty of discussion around the various text features and how to utilize them. To name a few...
     
  5. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    Mar 6, 2016

    As a science teacher, I am seriously interested and engrossed in teaching my students how to read and comprehend informational texts. Most informational texts ask our students to draw conclusions based on information gleaned from maps, graphs, debate, comparison and debate, and then using this information to create an answer, in the form of paragraphs or essays that show the logic of the thought processes that the students have utilized in the analysis of the facts within the reading. Although I teach HS, the process and importance of being able to utilize informative texts is not a given, as many students do not want to follow the bread crumbs to the logical conclusion. Even if they can find the answers, they still need to incorporate their answers into a literate response that is grade appropriate. My students were baffled by the need to be able to write about the conclusions when working on the PAARC exams, clearing showing me that although informative texts are not the easy reads that students prefer, they are vital if our students are to excel in the standardized tests. We call it Science Literacy, but I am sure that Content Literacy is a valid term for all of the informative texts that we need to expose our students to if we want them to be able to comprehend and then incorporate the knowledge into writing that is organized, well written, and grade appropriate

    Keep working on these texts, and don't forget that understanding alone won't show what they have learned. Teach them to craft well written paragraphs, incorporating the facts into the writing. Their future is depending on this.
     
  6. TeachCafe

    TeachCafe Comrade

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    Mar 8, 2016

    Huh. My kids are the opposite.
    They are horrible wit fiction stories. We have a TEK of Figure 19D on making inferences and OMG! It's so hard to teach and for them to get it. Informational and nonfiction texts come easier for them. I don't know why.

    I tie informational and nonfiction to expository writing which is our writing genre and it just clicks easier for them. Modeling, annotating, finding supporting details, etc
     
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  7. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    Mar 8, 2016

    Nonfiction and informational texts require the reader to get to the facts, and it doesn't matter how they find them, as long as they can make something meaningful once they have the facts in their possession. Fiction requires the reader to find the breadcrumbs, which may or may not be what was expected, so they are, in essence, rewriting the facts, as they know them, in their heads as new facts and clues are presented. Yes, for many students having to figure out what the other person means, knowing that you won't have all of the facts until the last page, is exhausting. If we persevere, we come to like the fiction works BECAUSE you have to stay for the whole ride to get to the final thrill and satisfaction. Sometimes changing what fiction they are reading can increase participation and anticipation. I have always been a proponent of truly free reading for fun. Face it, there are books we read because the curriculum tells us to, but the hardest thing to get poor readers to understand is that they can find something that speaks to them to read just for fun, just for themselves.
     
  8. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Mar 9, 2016

    I'm working on nonfiction text and text features with a student this week. She is responding better than I had anticipated because the materials are all about technology and inventions. And the writing is tied to the texts. She chose to research and write about Snapchat (one of her favorite ways to spend time). Since technology is so important in the lives of many students, I love that the topic has helped her really connected with the purpose for writing. She also likes that she knows more about it than I do.
     
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  9. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    Mar 9, 2016

    LOL! If there is any way to get a student excited about learning, it will always be the prospect of showing up the teacher. ;)
     
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  10. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Mar 10, 2016

    Agreed, vickilyn!
     

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