Non-fiction text features

How do you get students to identify non-fiction text features? With sticky notes!

Last week we took a closer look at two non-fiction texts about plants. We focussed on two pages about leaves. Using these non-fiction labels, we identified several features on the page.

Go to Ginger Snaps to download these cute cards for FREE! 

Here's how they look after we labelled both pages' features. We didn't use all the cards in the set as some didn't apply to our text. 

Information Report display

Once I had modelled it on the whiteboard, using my awesome students as assistants, they then chose a text to examine and label for themselves.

Student work samples

Student work samples

All of my students were able to complete this task at some level. A few chose the easier text (the bottom one in both photos) and only labelled a few main features. Some chose the more challenging text (the top one in both photos) and not only labelled all the different features they could find, they also counted and recorded how many instances of each feature! It was one of those lessons where I could see so many light bulbs turning on and connections made. 

Once we were all happy with the placement of our sticky note labels, we glued them down so they wouldn't fall off. 

This lesson is the starting point for us to further investigate how to write our own information reports. Instead of paragraph after paragraph of boring information, we are going to include features like the ones we found.

We are really excited about plants now! More on that later.
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