All year in reading, we have talked about main idea with our friends, but it has only been this week that we have zoomed in on identifying the topic, main idea, and supporting details of a text. This is such a hard concept for our firsties and we need lots of practice and graphic organizers.
Life in 1st grade is definitely hands-on, so we loved using Simply Creative Teaching’s Main Idea Mystery Bags. Each bag contained 4 “clues”. Throughout the day when a friend had exceptional behavior, they were able to choose an idea from a bag. Once all four items were pulled, we put the clues together to discover the mystery!
This graphic organizer (from my Differentiated Graphic Organizer pack) has also been a huge scaffold to my students. We’ve been using the organizer with the sentence starter “The author is trying to teach me…” and it’s really helped my friends consider the BIG idea of the whole article or chapter. You can snag this organizer FREE from Google Drive here.
BrainPop is, of course, one of our favorites. Moby is just so silly and the content is out of this world. I love the vocabulary my students are exposed to, and the after-video quizzes are just-right practice. Plus, my friends can sing the intro song like no-one’s business!
Next week, we will continue with this concept as we begin learning about the desert (we’ve also learned about the tundra and rainforest). To help our friends with this, I have made a series of non-fiction passages about desert animals (great for whole-group or guided reading instruction). You can grab the organizer and sample passage for FREE on TpT. All you need to do is click here and then, click the green ‘Preview’ button on the left of the screen!
After branching from what we know (the desert), we’re moving to all things animals – a first-grade favorite!
Oh goodness, friends. It is Friday. I am signing praises and going to bed now. So tell me, what are your favorite main idea resources? I’d love to hear your ideas! (For other FREE classroom resources and freebies, sign-up here for teaching ideas to land in your inbox each month. )
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