I have posted a lot about main idea over the course of this year, mainly because my 3rd and 5th grade groups have been working with this skill. A few weeks ago, we finished working with it, but I am just now getting around to posting about it. After some work with main idea, we spent one session having a little fun!
We spent a great deal of time working with main idea in the reading center. We started out looking at headings and figuring out what the main idea actually was. Then we worked a little on summarizing with the main idea with these flippy flappy things, or whatever you want to call them!
The Game Plan
After my students have worked hard, I use games as an assessment. This helps me see if they really understand what we have worked with, and the pressure is off of them to not worry about grades. My students have a chance to read and respond and even have some help from their friends.
I created some task cards to use for this skill. The cards include various types of main idea questions that help them really think about the different aspects of main idea. Many of the fiction and nonfiction passages require students to tell them main ideas and give evidence, but some require them to think differently about main idea, such as titles and other details.
We used a simple game board I had on hand with the task cards, but I have also included a game board in my set with the newspaper theme on it.
Needless to say, my students had a grand time reading the task cards and playing the game. I always have all of the kids read their cards at the same time, so they are all ready when their turns come. It also allows them plenty of think time if they need it. I learned who had a firm grasp on main idea and who still needs some work with it. And they thought they were just having fun! It's a win-win for everyone!
If you would like to take a gander at the Main Idea Task Cards, they are in my Teachers Pay Teachers store.
They are also included in my Comprehension Task Cards Bundle, which has become a growing bundle of sorts.
It includes my Author's Purpose Task Cards, Predictions Task Cards, Main Idea Task Cards, and Cause/Effect Task Cards. It is a Buy 3, Get 1 Free deal. If I create more task cards, I will add them and adjust the price accordingly.
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