Introduction to
Nonfiction Reading
Unit
Essential Questions
• When our curiosity is raised about a topic
how do we learn more about it?
• How do capable readers make sense of
nonfiction text?
• How do responsible readers judge the
accuracy of nonfiction text?
• How do we read nonfiction text to become
aware and empathetic to the needs of our
community?
Enduring Understandings
Students will understand that . . .
• Readers read nonfiction to satisfy their curiosity
about the community they live in.
• Capable readers choose specific strategies to make
meaning of nonfiction text
• Responsible readers are able to make better
personal choice when they evaluate the accuracy of
information in a reading to determine the validity of
the writer’s view point.
• Reading nonfiction text brings awareness and
empathy to the individual reader of the needs of
others in their community.
So, why are we doing this?
Practicing nonfiction reading by studying text
structures can help us…
*Read faster*
*Understand better*
*Remember longer*
Before Reading Strategies
(1) Access Prior Knowledge
*What do you already know
about the topic?
(2) Examine Text Features
* title, bold faced words, italics,
headings, graphics
(3) Predict the Text Structure of the article
*hint: you can find useful clues in the title!
(4) Determine your reader’s purpose and (5) determine
your reading rate
Reader’s Purpose
People read for different reasons.
-For example, you may read a horror story to be
entertained.
-Or a history of World War II to learn more
about the subject that interests you.
When you read, it is often helpful to set a purpose for
reading, or determine what you’d like to get out of a
piece of writing.
To get an idea of that purpose, try asking yourself
questions that begin with who, what, when, where,
why, and how.
Reading Rate
• Each type of reading has a different rate.
– An exciting novel is a quicker read than a text in
biology.
• You should adjust your reading rate
depending on the type of text that you read.
• Look at the chart on the next slide to
determine where a newspaper article would
fall.
D
E
C
R
E
A
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B
A
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C
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Mode
Purpose
Rate
Rate
range
1. Analytical
reading (legal
documents,
persuasive essays,
directions)
To analyze information for
inference, language, tone,
bias; to evaluate logic and
writer's craft.
Usually the slowest rate.
Varies with complexity of
material. May require more
than one reading.
150250
wpm
2. Study reading
(textbooks,
newspapers,
magazines)
To learn, synthesize, and
retain information; gaining
complete understanding of
text material.
Rate varies with amount to
be learned and type of
material.
150300
wpm
3. General reading To read as a leisure-time
(newspapers,
activity for pleasure and
magazines, novels) general information.
Rate varies with material,
purpose, and familiarity.
250500
wpm
4. Skimming (initial
research)
To get a general idea of the
material and some details;
to get a mental outline of
material's organization.
Can be twice as fast as
general reading rate.
5001000
wpm
5. Scanning
(phone numbers,
airline schedules)
To locate specific
information and answer
questions as quickly as
possible.
Fastest rate with no specific
wpm determined.
1000+
range
During Reading Strategies
• Connect to Community
• Predict
• Infer
• Annotate/Summarize
What is a text structure?
• A “structure” is a
building or
framework.
• “Text structure”
refers to how a
piece of text is
built
What is a text structure?
• Builders use
different structures
to build and
construct different
things.
• A skyscraper and
house, for example,
would require 2 very
different structures.
What is a text structure?
• Just like architects,
builders, and
construction
workers, writers use
different structures
to build their ideas.
• Each text structure
communicates ideas
in a different way.
Text Structures
• Description – presenting a main idea and then
offering several supporting details.
• Compare/Contrast – examining the similarities
and differences of more than one topic.
• Problem/Solution – explaining a problem and
offering solutions.
• Cause/Effect – explaining how one event leads
to another.
Accuracy of Information
• What is Accuracy?
– the condition or quality of being true, correct, or exact;
freedom from error.
• What would affect Accuracy of Information?
–
–
–
–
Credibility – author’s credentials
Validity – well grounded; justifiable
Balanced Facts – impartiality, looks at both sides
Source of Publication – credible reputation, current,
& purpose for publication
Unit Activities
• Most of the reading people do is nonfiction
reading.
• During this unit we will be examining the
nonfiction text structures through magazine,
newspaper, and internet articles, practice
reading strategies, and develop skills to help
us determine the accuracy of the information
that we consume.
• Have fun reading!
• Some information from this presentation was
adapted from and/or inspired by the Power Point
presentation, “Understanding Text Structures,” by
Emily Kissner.
• Follow the links to find the original information:
• http://www.slideshare.net/elkissn/understandingtext-structures
• http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Un
derstanding-Text-Structure-Powerpoint
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Introduction to Text Structures