Saturday, March 15, 2014

Main Ideas and Details

I taught reading last week with a mini lesson on Main Ideas and Details. I write lesson plans and then I write a "script" so I have a better idea of what to say. Below is my script: 

We will open our reading textbooks in a few minutes, but for now, I want you to sit on your book. They story we are going to read today is called, At Home Around the World. This is a non-fiction text. Nonfiction is a type of writing that shares facts and information. Nonfiction is real and it is written to inform us. Nonfiction has photographs and text features like an index, glossary, and table of contents. 

At Home Around the World is written by Lucy Floyd. Our author wrote a little bit about herself and our story, which I would like to read to you. 

Stay sitting on your books. I am going to page through our story. I want you to start thinking what our story might be about. 

Raise your hand. What do you think the story will be about based on the title, key words, and pictures throughout the story?

These are all great ideas! Please open your textbooks to page 68. I am going to read but I want you to follow along. 

I have a few questions I would like us to discuss as a class:

1. What was one fact you learned from reading the story?
2. How do the words and pictures work together to give information?
3. Why is a tepee a good home for people who moved around a lot?
4. Why is it a good idea for people to build houses from things around them, such as clay or rocks?
5. Which house in the text would you like to live in? Why?

(Show Anchor Chart) Today, we are going to practice main idea and details. The main idea is what the text is all about. To find the main idea, we look at the title, pictures, and repeated words. 

As you can see on my paper, I drew a hamburger. The main idea is the whole hamburger. The details are the smaller parts like the lettuce, tomato, and meat. Details are the information that backs up or explains the main idea. Details tell us more. 

Take a minute or two to page through the text we just read. I want you to look at the title page, pictures, and repeated words. See if you can find the main idea. 

Raise your hand if you think you know what the main idea of our text might be? I agree, our main idea is Homes Around the World. 

Details tell us more. So, think about what we know about houses around the world. Take a minute to page through the text but this time, look for details. Tell me something specific about houses around the world. Think about the materials people have made houses from. Think about the different types of houses, theses are details we can put on our hamburger (Write 3 details). 

1st graders, you are going to make your own Main Ideas and Details Hamburger just like we did here.

Main Idea/Details Anchor Chart
 Student work was awesome but hard to read if they did it in pencil and so I only have 2 examples to share with you.

The lesson went incredibly well. My mentor teacher said she liked how I introduced the author first. She never thought of that. She loved my text to self connection. Our text was about homes around the world. I said I saw a pink house shaped like an egg when I was in South Carolina. The kids thought that was pretty cool. I talked about main ideas and details after reading the text. If I were to do the lesson over, I would do that before reading and go into more details after the read aloud. Oh well, there's always next time. My mentor teacher told me each time I teach my direction become more clear and more direct. My mentor teacher said I had an excellent explanation of main idea and she thought my poster and hamburger analogy was very helpful.

The lesson went great but I am totally kicking myself for not recording the second part of my lesson. We needed to split it up and when we came back from gym, my plan was to re-read the chart and explain the activity. That's not how it went. I spent at least twenty more minutes on the lesson. I had planned for none of that so it was activities off the top of my head and I was able to get each child to fully understand main ideas and details which is a hard topic for 1st graders. I had them use their thumbs to indicate their understanding. This lesson would have been great in my teaching portfolio but because I missed the application part on tape I don't think I can use it and that really bums me out. 

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