Mastering Main Idea using Task Cards - Simply Skilled Teaching

Mastering Main Idea using Task Cards


Hi Friends…Happy Fall!  I wanted to take some time today to share HOW I teach Main Idea to my students…not an easy task…but doable using the right tools!

This past week, the skill that we were working on was MAIN IDEA.  I don’t know about you, but my 2nd graders have a heck of a time with this skill.  Not sure why…but they do. So I decided that this week we would read something every day and find the main idea and write about it in different ways…in hopes that they will have a better understanding.

Over the last year in my guided reading groups, I have found that using TASK CARDS  to practice a specific skill has truly helped my students more readily grasp the concept I’m teaching.  Whenever I’m in search of a specific set of task cards, I head right over to Rachel Lynette’s TPT store because she is the QUEEN of all things task cards!  She has task cards for every skill under the sun.  So I set out on my search for Rachel’s main idea task cards and of course found the perfect set.  These task cards were for grades 3-6 so I only used them for my two highest reading groups…which was perfect because they need a bit of a challenge during our group time!

So… Step 1….
I introduce the skill of Main Idea using Rachel’s task cards in my reading group.  I created a Flip Flap page to adhere the task cards to so we could add them to our Interactive Notebooks.  Here is how I set it up…
{keep reading on…there is a FREEBIE at the end :}
I print out the task cards in a SMALLER format.  I click “MULTIPLE” in my print dialogue box when I am printing which prints 2 pages on ONE page which makes them smaller!  I LOVE this little trick.
Then I cut them up and adhere them to my flip flap page.  Lastly, I photocopy the flip flap page in a back-to-front manner because there is writing on the opposite side of the page that says Main Idea and Supporting Detail.
Then I introduce the topic of Main Idea using these short and sweet text selections where it is MUCH easier to figure out the main idea and details.
The students read the text selection and underlined the main idea ON the task card.  Then, they cut the flaps and wrote the MAIN IDEA on the inside and ONE of the supporting details that supports the main idea.  They were TOTALLY HOOKED!  They loved working with this flip flap book on Main Idea.
Thanks so Rachel Lynette for creating a GREAT resource!
I actually did this on Day 1 and Day 2 of my guided reading groups for this week.
Step 2….
Then on Day 3 and Day 4 we begin to APPLY our understanding of finding the MAIN IDEA using a non-fiction text.  These texts come from our reading program.  In order to practice the skill, I always have them write the main idea and supporting details that align with the text we are reading.  So after we finished our Main Idea Task Card practice, I introduced our guided reading book for the week and wrote the main idea and supporting details using my flip flap books.
Here is a picture of my little one completing it…
I also have this Main Idea Reading Tab-It that my students will complete in two weeks.
Our comprehension skills are practiced many times throughout the year, so in two weeks we will be working on Main Idea again and I will be using my Reading Tab-It to practice the skill.  I try to do a different activity every time I review a comprehension skill.  It keeps the kiddos engaged and having FUN at the same time.
This is my Main Idea Reading Tab-Its book….
Step 3….
On Day 5, we work on some comprehension questions from the guided reading book that are written in our reading notebooks.
As I mentioned, we use Interactive Notebooks in my classroom.  However, I also create a Guided Reading Lapbook with my students which is an ongoing project that we work on for a couple of months.  This Main Idea mini flip flap book is adhered into their Guided Reading Lapbook that I send home when it is filled.  Every week, as we practice a specific comprehension skill, we complete on of my flip flap books that aligns to the skill.
This is a sample of what it looks like….
So….That’ it in a nutshell on how I introduce, teach, and practice Main Idea.  I hope you have found some tips that can help you in your classroom!
Oh…and if you are interested in checking out my flip flap books that I use in my classroom for my Guided Reading Groups, click the images below to check them out.
And DON’T FORGET to check out Rachel Lynette’s Task Cards!
Here is your FREEBIE to use when you decide to use TASK CARDS for your Interactive Notebooks!
Thanks for stopping by!
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Anna D.

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I'm Anna DiGilio

Hi, I'm Anna! I was a primary teacher for over twenty-three years, wife of a firefighter, mother of twin teenage boys, obsessed with being creative and helping teachers and love my Saturday morning quiet cup of coffee!
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Hi, I'm Anna! I was a primary teacher for over twenty-three years, wife of a firefighter, mother of twin teenage boys, obsessed with being creative and helping teachers and love my Saturday morning quiet cup of coffee!
Thanks for stopping by!

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