The purpose of this lesson is to introduce students to informational text structure. Students are taught to identify some of the features of a science text and to use these features to understand important ideas in the text.
Explicit instruction in recognizing informational text features is important for two reasons. First, research suggests that explicit instruction provides students with both the ability and motivation to use reading skills and strategies independently to comprehend text. Second, research also suggests that an understanding of text features enhances reading comprehension, particularly comprehension of expository text. Text features can help readers to, 1) identify the most important ideas in a text, 2) find specific information they are looking for, 3) anticipate information the text will provide, and 4) understand and integrate into their own ideas the challenging ideas and concepts they read about.