Teaching text structures to students can be rather difficult, but once students master it, it can be easier than you think! Today, I am going to share 5 simple activities that you can do with your students to help them master nonfiction text structures.
Teaching Text Structure by Acting It Out!
Get kids moving in your classroom and allow them to practice reading skills in different ways.
Give students a scene that describes one of the text structures. Then, have students act it out in front of the class. The class’ job is to determine which text structure they are talking about.
An example of this would be, “Compare and contrast gym class and art class. Do this by acting out a scene from gym and a scene from art. Then, have people talk about why they like and dislike each one.”
You can grab all the scenes ready to go for you in the text structure freebie! Head here to get it delivered to your mailbox!
Switch the Text Structure!
We do this activity several times throughout the year. Basically, as a class, we read a book and I do a lesson teaching kids how to determine the text structure of that book. As a class, we determine the structure of the book.
Then, the kids rewrite the story in a different text structure. This requires their brains to really think about text structure in a new way.
For example, we read “Cats vs. Dogs” which can be found on EPIC here for free.
Once we determine that this text structure is compare and contrast, students choose either cats or dogs to write about and write a new story about a cat or dog in a new structure.
Digital Practice to Teach Text Structure
Practicing things digitally is so powerful for students because they are always highly engaged! Here are three ways to practice this digitally.
- Text Structure Slide Deck– Assign students the slide deck to practice text structure. They read books, close reads, and more to practice the skill. They also watch videos and play games for extra practice.
- Text Structure Blooket– This is a FUN class game to review the words related to text structure. You assign it to your students by having them type in the game code and they play. Seriously, if you haven’t tried this out yet you need to! It is a FAVORITE for kiddos.
- Text Structure Snowball Fight– a simple and fun game for your kids to play for 5-10 minutes to review!
Repetition in different ways
The main way to get students to master text structure is just to practice, practice, practice. Quick ways to practice include…
- Task Cards which you can grab for FREE in the freebie here!
- Reading a book on EPIC and determining the text structure.
- Close reading practice- Each month I am practicing text structure at least once in these paragraphs of the day.
- Writing- Have students write nonfiction stories in the text structure you assign.
I hope one of these text structure strategies or activities will help your kiddos master the skill. Make sure to grab that free resource that includes an anchor chart, a lesson, and task cards for teaching text structure above.