What Is Text Structure? (Best solution)

Text structures refer to the way authors organize information in text. Recognizing the underlying structure of texts can help students focus attention on key concepts and relationships, anticipate what is to come, and monitor their comprehension as they read. TEXT STRUCTURE. DEFINITION.

Text Structure | Ereading Worksheets

  • Text Structure. The term “text structure” refers to how information is organized in a passage. The structure of a text can change many times in a work and even within a paragraph. Students are often asked to identify text structures or patterns of organization on state reading tests.

Contents

What is a text structure example?

Examples of text structures include: sequence/process, description, time order/chronology, proposition/support, compare/contrast, problem/solution, cause/effect, inductive/deductive, and investigation. The benefits of text structure instruction for reading comprehension have strong empirical support.

What are the 5 types of text structure?

Text structures Now we will talk about internal text structure – the way the text is written – to also help us get information from non-fiction text more easily. There are five types of text we are going to discuss: definition/description, problem-solution, sequence/time, comparison and contrast, and cause and effect.

What is text structure and why is it important?

Why is Text Structure Important? When readers identify and recognize the text structure of a text, this can significantly improve their comprehension and retention of information. Understanding the text structure can help students: Organize information and details they are learning in their minds while reading.

What are the 6 types of text structures?

Terms in this set (6)

  • Chronological. Goes in order of time/date.
  • Cause and effect. One thing happen that cause something else to happen.
  • Problem and solution. A proposed solution to a problem.
  • Compare and contrast. Similarities and differences.
  • Spatial. Describes how a space is arranged.
  • Descriptive.

What are the common types of text structure?

This lesson teaches five common text structures used in informational and nonfiction text: description, sequence, cause and effect, compare and contrast, and problem and solution.

What are the 4 types of structures?

There are four types of structures;

  • Frame: made of separate members (usually thin pieces) put together.
  • Shell: encloses or contains its contents.
  • Solid (mass): made almost entirely of matter.
  • liquid (fluid): braking fluid making the brakes.

What are the 4 text types?

There are many aspects to literary writing, and many ways to analyse it, but four basic categories are descriptive, narrative, expository, and argumentative.

What are the 5 nonfiction text structures?

There are thought to be five common text structures: description, cause and effect, compare and contrast, problem and solution, and sequence (Meyer 1985).

Why is text structure important in writing an essay?

Structure is important in academic writing becuase it helps to make your ideas clear, guides the reader’s comprehension and can strengthen your arguments.

How do you identify text structure and form?

To put this simply, analyse:

  1. FORM – is the name of the text type that the writer uses. For example, scripts, sonnets, novels etc.
  2. STRUCTURE – is how the plot is ordered and put together for the reader.
  3. LANGUAGE – the words a writer uses and what impact they have.

What is the text structure of a passage?

The text structure of a passage is the internal pattern of organization of the piece. Text structure helps to support the author’s purpose in writing. Transitions are words or phrases that show how things are connected and can be very helpful in determining text structure.

Text Structure

Text structure refers to the manner in which the information contained inside a written text is presented. This method helps students comprehend that a book could convey a key concept and details; a cause and later its effects; and/or diverse viewpoints of an issue. Teaching pupils to recognize typical text structures can help students check theircomprehension.

Benefits

This method can be used with the entire class, small groups, or individuals by the instructor. Learners develop the ability to recognize and understand text structures, which aids them in navigating the varied structures given in factual and fiction texts, respectively. Match-up activities such as having students compose paragraphs that follow common text patterns help students identify these text structures while they are reading.

Create and Use the Strategy

  1. Identify the prescribed reading and provide an introduction to the material to the students. Introduce the concept of text structures, which are patterns of arrangement for texts. Introduce the following typical text structures (for more complete information, please consult the chart below):
  • Description, sequencing, issue and solution, cause and effect, and comparison and contrast are all included.

In this section, you will introduce yourself and model the text structure using a visual organizer.

To use the text structure strategy teachers should:

  1. Examples of paragraphs that relate to each text structure should be provided. Examine topic phrases that provide hints to the reader about a certain structure
  2. And Model the writing of a paragraph that employs a certain text structure for your students. Assigning children the task of writing paragraphs that adhere to a specified text structure is recommended. Students should use a graphic organizer to draw a diagram of these structures.

Examples

Text Structure Definition /Example Organizer
Description This type of text structure features a detailed description of something to give the reader a mental picture.Example: A book may tell all about whales or describe what the geography is like in a particular region.
Cause and Effect This structure presents the causal relationship between a specific event, idea, or concept and the events, ideas, or concept that follow.Example:Weather patterns could be described that explain why a big snowstorm occurred.
Comparison / Contrast This type of text examines the similarities and differences between two or more people, events, concepts, ideas, etc.Example: A book about ancient Greece may explain how the Spartan women were different from the Athenian women.
Order / Sequence This text structure gives readers a chronological of events or a list of steps in a procedure.Example: A book about the American revolution might list the events leading to the war. In another book, steps involved in harvesting blue crabs might be told.
Problem–Solution This type of structure sets up a problem or problems, explains the solution, and then discusses the effects of the solution.

References

Sam V. Dickson, D. C. Simmons, and Emeenui E. J. Kameenui are all professors at the University of Hawaii at Mnoa (1995). This paper presents a summary of studies on text arrangement and its relationship to reading comprehension. The National Center to Improve the Tools of Educators is based in Eugene, Oregon. Dymock, S. (March 26, 2008) was the source of this information (2005). Teaching Expository Text Structure Awareness is a difficult task. The Reading Teacher, vol. 59, no. 2, pp. 177-181.

  1. Simonsen is a professor of sociology at the University of Minnesota (1996).
  2. Lapp, J.
  3. Farnan (Eds.
  4. Allyn and Bacon, Needham Heights, Massachusetts.

Text Structure Lesson for Kids: Definition & Examples

When writing a novel, one text structure that authors may employ is the comparison and contrast framework. Comparing and contrasting two things is a way of expressing how two things are similar and how two things are distinct. You can use visual aids such as a Venn diagram to assist you in making a list of all the differences and similarities that you notice between two parts of a story that are being compared and contrasted – simply place the things that overlap, or the similarities, in the middle of the diagram and the differences on the outside of the diagram.

A Venn diagram can help you compare and contrast.

When a tale uses a comparison and contrast text structure, signal words such as alike, similar, and both are used to help the reader understand the plot. These terms express how the two items are in comparison to one another. Other signal words in this form of text structure, on the other hand, are distinct, and include, for example, while, and on the other hand. These terms convey the fact that the two objects are distinct from one another.

Sequencing

When authors recount stories in chronological sequence, they utilize a text structure called sequencing. They may employ transitional terms such as first, next, then, and ultimately, as well as ordinal words such as first, second, third, and fourth to convey their meaning. Using this text structure, passages can occasionally recount a tale in the chronological sequence in which an event occurred, describe the procedures necessary to manufacture something, or depict the life story of someone from birth to death.

Following that, we unpacked our belongings and had a siesta. After our sleep, we went out to supper, watched a movie, then went for a walk on the beach, which was wonderful. After that, we returned to our hotel, took a bath, and retired to our rooms.

Cause and Effect

Using cause and effect text structure while creating stories is another sort of text structure that authors employ. What is known as cause and effect discusses the reasons why something occurs. More exactly, the cause of anything is the reason for it to happen, and the impact is what really occurs as a result of the cause.

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Teaching Text Structures

Written by| 1 on July 21, 2015| 0 Comments Students should learn about text structure, and this blog post is dedicated to encouraging instructors of all grades and subject areas to do so. It is a fantastic technique to improve your writing and reading comprehension abilities. When it comes to text structure, it is the organization of ideas as well as the links between those ideas; readers and authors who are familiar with text structure can tell when information is being revealed. The fifth Common Core Reading Standard (CCRS5) is concerned with teaching text structure.

Authors employ structural features to arrange information and ideas in their texts, as well as to draw attention to crucial sections of the text.

Click here to get a paper that demonstrates the relationship between understanding and writing structure.

The Elements of Structural Design

  • Text characteristics, such as the title and headers, aid in the identification of the topic and the general structure of ideas in a document. Using headings to break up a large piece of material into digestible “chunks” makes it simpler for readers to get through it. Images and captions draw attention to crucial aspects and provide an alternate representation of information to supplement the written depiction. Understanding the type of writing (e.g., persuasive, informational, narrative) and genre helps readers to obtain hints about how the text is arranged and presented, which may be quite useful. Introductions and conclusions assist readers in determining the topic and purpose of the writing
  • But, they are not required. It is also possible to improve comprehension and retention of information by recognizing certain patterns of organization (for example, sequence, comparison, and contrast) (Akhondi et al, 2011). Please see the attachment for a set of paragraph templates that may be used to assist pupils in learning how to write utilizing various organizational patterns
  • Transition words and phrases are essential structural elements, despite the fact that they are frequently disregarded. A transition is a link between two or more phrases, paragraphs, or longer sections of text. Transition words and phrases are frequently used to convey signals to the reader regarding the arrangement of a piece of writing. Here is a list of often used transition words: Writers can use their understanding of sentence and paragraph structure to develop the individual ideas contained within sentences (these ideas are often referred to as propositions) and combine them to build the primary concepts included within paragraphs.

Instructional strategies for teaching text structure are included in the professional development for both The Key Comprehension Routine andKeys to Content Writing. Here are some extra resources to help you with your text structure lessons:

  • Text Structure Worksheets(E Reading Worksheets)
  • Patterns of Organization(E Reading Worksheets)
  • Teaching and Assessing Understanding of Text Structures Across Grades(Karin Hess, National Center for the Improvement of Educational Assessment)
  • Reading Mamablog’s post on 5 Days of Text Structure Instruction for Readers

Joan Sedita

Joan Sedita is the originator and author of the Keys to Literacy professional development seminars, as well as the author of the Keys to Literacy curriculum. She has extensive experience as an educator, as well as being a nationally known speaker and teacher training. She has worked in the literacy education sector for more than 35 years, and she has presented to thousands of teachers and associated professionals at schools, universities, clinics, and professional conferences throughout her career.

Teaching Text Structure (And What To Do When Students Struggle)

Informative text structure is a very effective reading skill that may greatly assist pupils in making sense of and analyzing informational content. Text structure teaching tactics are discussed in this post, which includes pre-requisite skills, all of the distinct text structure abilities, and strategies for when students struggle with text structure.

What is Text Structure?

In a text, text structure refers to the way in which the details and information in the text are arranged. There are five common forms of text structure:

  • Description
  • Chronological order/sequence
  • Comparison and contrast
  • Problem and solution
  • Cause and effect
  • And conclusion.

When I present text structures, I introduce them all at once, and then we go into further depth on individual text structures over the course of several days.

The following is the order in which I have traditionally presented my lessons.

Why is Text Structure Important?

Reading comprehension and retention of information can both be considerably improved when readers are able to identify and understand the text structure of a piece of writing. Students can benefit from understanding the text structure if they do the following:

  • While reading, kids should organize the information and facts they are acquiring in their thoughts. Identify and draw connections between the details that are offered in a text. Summarize the most relevant points that were discussed in a work

Pre-Requisite Standards Before Teaching Text Structure

Make certain that you have taught or that the students have a working grasp of the following before beginning to teach text structure:

  • That books and writers are written with certain goals in mind
  • That a text or section of text contains a central idea that the author wishes the reader to grasp (although students may not be able to adequately generate or select a central idea, they must recognize that texts contain such ideas)
  • That a text or section of text contains a subordinate idea that the author wishes the reader to grasp That diverse subjects or events can be connected in a variety of ways (cause and effect, compare and contrast relationships, etc.). In order to recognize these linkages at the sentence level, students need have a working understanding of how to do so.

Text Structure Skills Students Need to Master

Fourth and fifth graders have varying levels of text structure proficiency. Students in 5th grade are expected to go far more than simple identification when it comes to identifying objects. Increasing the difficulty for 4th grade children (who are ready) will sow the seeds of success that will carry them through to the 5th grade. 5th grade instructors, on the other hand, may be forced to teach all of the text structure skills in order to get our pupils up to the level of rigor that is required (even the ones required by 4th because we know that retention is not always something that goes in our favor.)

  • Make connections between details (Do they describe the same topic? Are they related to each other? Is there a comparison and contrast between the topics?)
  • Recognize the important terms that are used to demonstrate common links between information
  • Understand text structures and their functions (for example, to transmit information in an ordered manner that aids in the presentation of the central topic)
  • The text structure utilized in a paragraph should be identified. Proofread your work and tie it back to the primary concept and information offered in it to demonstrate text structure. Show that you understand the text’s structure by identifying the key terms or clue words that were employed. Locate and describe the general text structure that is employed by a text that has numerous paragraphs. Make use of the text structure of a text to assist you in summarizing it
  • Identification and understanding of the reasons why a text has different sorts of text structures Use a visual organizer that is tailored to the text structure to summarize the most important details offered in a text. It is important to recognize that texts on the same general topic may be produced utilizing a variety of text structures. Learn to compare and contrast text structures employed by numerous texts on the same topic, as well as to comprehend why the text structures vary. Provide an explanation for why a certain text structure was employed in a text (especially when evaluating texts on the same topic but with varying text structures)

Keep this list in mind as you design your mini-lessons for the general group as well as your small group reading lessons. I spend two weeks with 5th graders teaching them about text organization (read more about my reading pacing here). If you don’t have the time to devote to this, I propose that you include the teaching of these skills into your small group reading sessions.

Tips for Students Who Struggle with Text Structure

If students have difficulty comprehending text structure, reteach them the following skills or have them review their comprehension: 1. Bring it down to the level of a phrase. Is it possible for the pupils to recognize a cause and effect link in a single statement? Repeat the process for the remaining text structures. If pupils are having difficulty at the sentence level, make sure they receive the essential teaching. Include key terms and/or clue words in the sorting and identification exercises to supplement the existing guidance (identifying them in texts).

  • A large number of students confuse text structures with description, despite the fact that all text structures are, in essence, descriptions.
  • When describing cats and dogs, for example, it is useful to compare and contrast both species’ characteristics.
  • “Does the text describe the issue in terms of a certain connection (compare and contrast, cause and effect, etc.)?” I ask myself in this manner.
  • Draw attention to, underline, or highlight the words in a text that clearly demonstrate relationships.
  • 5.
  • Students will have higher success identifying the text structure if they can picture the optimal method to organize details in a text before they begin to read the text.
  • 6.
  • One of the ways I assist my students learn text structure is by having them write using certain text structures.
  • It is important to note that pupils must have a basic understanding of a book in order to comprehend the specifics and how they are related/connected.

One method of assisting with skill education is to use a lower lexile number. To see passages and writings written for 4th and 5th grade abilities but at a lexile level of 2nd/3rd grade, please visit the following link.

Download a Printable Version

Would you want a one-page printable version of the techniques and information for teaching text structure that I’ve offered in this post? Click here. To obtain it, simply click here on the image below.

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Recommended Text Structure Resources

It is strongly recommended that you visit myText Structures Resource if you are weary of scouring the internet for activities, resources, and texts to use in teaching text structure to your students. The number of materials for teaching and practicing text structure is so large that you will most likely not be able to use them all (which is not a bad problem to have!). There are educational posters, visual organizers, a plethora of texts to choose from (both individually and in pairs), and exercises for small groups.

This Post Is Available for Purchase

Text Structures ResourcesActivities

Everything you need to teach text structures is included, including posters, graphic organizers, texts (short texts, long texts, paired texts), and small group activities, such as task cards.

More Text Structure Blog Posts and Freebies

Read Alouds for Teaching Text Structure Reading Sorts– Grab a free text structure reading sort in this free collection of reading sorts. They provide a wonderful re-teaching exercise or reading center to cover basic identification of text structures. Free Text Structure Activities and Resources– Grab some free printable materials to assist your students grasp text structure and apply it to their own novels on this site.

Text: Text Structures

Text structure refers to the framework that a text’s beginning, middle, and end are built upon. Distinct narrative and expository genres serve different objectives and appeal to varied audiences, necessitating the use of different text structures in order to achieve those aims and appeal. Beginnings and ends aid in the construction of a cohesive whole from a collection of fragments.

BEGINNINGS: HOOKING YOUR READER

Where to begin is a key decision for a writer. Just as a strong beginning may lure a reader into a piece of writing, a terrible beginning might dissuade a reader from reading further. The opening, sometimes called theleador thehook, orients the reader to the objective of the writing by introducing characters or location (for narrative) or the topic, thesis, or argument (for expository writing) (for expository writing). Moreover, a strong start establishes expectations about the piece’s purpose, style, and overall tone by setting expectations early on.

WHAT’S IN THE MIDDLE?

For a writer, deciding where to begin is a critical decision. Similar to how a strong introduction might entice a reader to continue reading, a terrible introduction can turn off a reader from continuing to read further. It is also known as theleador thehook, and it serves to introduce readers to the objective of the writing by presenting characters or setting (in the case of narrative) or the topic, thesis, or argument (in the case of argumentative writing) (for expository writing). Moreover, a strong start establishes expectations about the piece’s purpose, style, and atmosphere.

Writing strategies like as dialogue, flashbacks, description, inner monologue, and diving immediately into the action are used by good authors to grab their readers in the opening phrases and paragraphs.

ENDINGS: BEYOND “HAPPILY EVER AFTER”

If you’ve ever seen a terrific movie for ninety minutes only to have it limp to a close with a poor conclusion, you know how important it is to have powerful ends in your stories, just as strong starts are for good writing. And anyone who has seen the director’s cut of a movie, which has all of the possible endings, understands that even great directors have difficulty coming up with satisfying endings for their films to be released. Authors must make the same decisions that directors do about how to bring their stories to a close, ending the conflict and wrapping up loose ends in a way that will satisfy their audience.

When the goal is to entertain, the conclusion may be happy or tragic, or it may be a surprise ending that provides a surprising twist.

Endings can be purposefully ambiguous or sardonic, with the intent of making the reader ponder, or they might plainly declare the moral of the narrative, instructing the reader on what to do with the information.

What is Text Structure?

As adults, we don’t tend to give much thought to the structure of a piece of writing. Because we are already proficient readers, we are able to assimilate the text’s structure as well as its content without any difficulty. However, even if we aren’t always aware of it, the structure of a book — particularly a nonfiction piece — contributes significantly to our understanding of the material being presented. The way information is ordered in a paragraph, chapter, or book assists our brains in determining which piece of information is the most significant and how to categorize the other information.

Identifying and understanding the purpose of typical text structures is a talent that is frequently specified in your language arts curriculum for the young readers in your classroom, and it is a skill that is often highlighted in your language arts curriculum.

One of the most essential aspects of teaching text structure is that it eventually leads to pupils becoming better writers.

So, what steps should you take to begin teaching text structure to your young readers? First and foremost, it aids in the comprehension of the most typical text structures used by non-fiction writers.

7 Common Text Structures

  1. Cause and Effect:These writings explain something by highlighting an occurrence and explaining the effects. Science and history texts typically employ this format. The terms “because,” “hence,” and “why” are important to search for in this type of writing
  2. Chronological: These texts organize events in the sequence in which they occurred. In current events, history, as well as works of fiction and memoir, this pattern is frequently used. Time markers such as “first,” “next,” “then,” and “eventually” are important to remember. The comparison and contrast writings are mostly descriptive, but they deal with two or more themes in order to draw attention to the similarities and contrasts that exist between them. This framework is beneficial in all topics. Key terms include “more,” “less,” “asas,” “than” and “however.”
  3. s Order of Importance:These writings provide facts or information in a hierarchy, often with the most significant thing first. A common application of this format is in news reports and science, although it may be applied to a variety of areas. Key terms include “most,” “least,” and “important.”
  4. Problem and Solution: These books begin by outlining a problem and then describe how to resolve or fix the problem. This framework is widespread is science, math and social sciences as well as a wide range of useful publications. Key terms include “issue,” “problem,” “trouble,” “fix,” “solve” and “how.”
  5. s Sequence / Process:Similar to chronological texts, this style places elements in order, but with an emphasis on showing the method something should be done. This is a common occurrence in lab reports and how-to articles. These texts describe situations, generally arranging that information by position
  6. For example, describing a room by traveling from the entryway to the opposite wall is an example of spatial / descriptive writing. This structure may be found in both fiction and non-fiction works of literature. Prepositions such as “above,” “below,” “behind,” and other similar expressions are important. The use of adjectives is also a distinguishing feature of this text structure

Tips for Teaching Text Structure to Elementary School Students

Although the notion of text organization can be a bit dry, you can ensure that your pupils understand the core of the subject by following a few simple guidelines to make the subject simple for them to absorb.

1. Explain Why Text Structures Are Important

It is beneficial to explain to your pupils why they are studying this subject matter — just make sure you do so in a kid-friendly manner to ensure that they understand what you are saying. That means skipping over the section on state examinations and concentrating instead on how comprehending an author’s goal will help students grasp the readings they’re assigned to. Also, you might point out that it’s a smart method to structure text so that it can be reinforced in the future.

2. Use Age-Appropriate Examples

While discussing text structure, it is always preferable to use concrete examples than than simply talking about them in general terms. It’s ideal to keep your examples concise and to the point — and to make sure they’re appropriate for your children’s reading level. Even while you can use a paragraph from your classroom library, it may be more convenient to simply compose your own. Consider looking at this fantastic SlideShare for further inspiration.

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3. Discuss and Dissect the Sample

Ask your pupils to read your example and identify sentences or words that demonstrate how the writer communicates his or her argument. As an example, which terms convey the idea that a comparison is being drawn? Once students have worked through an example or two, you may ask them to consolidate their understanding of the subject by producing a short piece that matches the framework you’re teaching.

4. Brainstorm Key Words

Another fantastic moment to have your kids develop key terms that they can use to search for – they’re certain to come up with many more examples than the ones we’ve provided above! Determine if your students can fill in the blanks on a sheet of chart paper with terms that will alert them to the text structure being used for each text structure. Using these posters to decorate your classroom and serve as a visual reminder of upcoming language arts classes is a fantastic idea!

5. Take It Slow

Attempting to cover all seven text structures in a single class would be quite dangerous. Doing one lesson at a time is recommended, with lessons spaced out over a week or longer period of time. As you read for educational purposes throughout the year, you’ll have lots of opportunities to review the content. It’s a natural method to reinforce the principles in a more meaningful way, so make sure to keep the reminders coming throughout the year! Visit our nonfiction text features posters for more information.

Teach Readers to Discern Text Structure

Fourth, utilize the visual of the dominoes to show one or more of the reasons why something occurred. The chicken foot motif is ideal for a single cause with a variety of consequences. Both versions of the matchingCause/Effect graphic organizers are available for download. Teach pupils to recognize the links between cause(s) and effect(s) by employing the ideas of before and after (s). Problem-Solution Structure: Use the puzzle image to expose a problem (the incomplete puzzle) and how to solve it (add the missing piece(s) to complete the puzzle.

  • The matchingProblem/Solution visual organizers are available in both English and Spanish.
  • They have been taught from an early age that they must compromise and collaborate with one another.
  • 6.
  • Both versions of the matchingProposition/Support graphic organizers are available for download.
  • The first paragraph establishes the author’s claim–what is the topic of the essay and what is his or her position on the topic?
  • It is someone’s suggestion on how to resolve a contentious topic for which there is no “correct” answer.
  • Comments from a fantastic teacher While teaching fourth and fifth graders at Valparaiso Community Schools (Valparaiso, IN), Faryl Smith introduced her pupils to text structures inside her previously established content-area curricular studies.

With this knowledge, she moved on to educate about the characteristics of that particular sort of text by examining other information books and identifying their layouts.

This was accomplished easily in fifth grade, but it took more time in fourth grade since they were transferring from reading to learn to writing to learn.

They were unable to comprehend how to read informational literature and were unable to comprehend the structure of the text.

Given the variety of text structures available, she opted to concentrate on five primary ones: chronological-sequence, cause-and–effect, problem–solution, compare–contrast, and description.

Once students had a grip on recognizing these five (with many work!), she went on to the key idea.

How did you get to that conclusion?

Then, if it was description, the following inquiry would be,What is the person, place, object, or concept that is being described?

What exactly was the issue, and how was it resolved?

What exactly is being contrasted?

What happened, and why did it happen, is a mystery.

What is the subject of this sequence, or what event is taking place?

Students next learned how to express their replies as a main-idea statement, which they applied to their next assignment.

When the students realized how well they understood the text structure, they were pleasantly surprised at how quickly they arrived to the primary point.

If children understand how to write and how to read, they will be able to obtain information from a wide range of texts and will be able to comprehend them!

They are able to summarize and identify the primary concept since they are familiar with the text’s organizational structure.

This trip has been eye-opening for Faryl and her pupils, as they have assisted children in the intermediate grades in their transition from learning how to read to reading to learn.

5 Types of Informational Text Structures

The great majority of writings are composed for one of three purposes: education, entertainment, or information. In order to accomplish these goals, authors employ one or more of the five text structures listed below:

  • Identification of the problem and the solution
  • Description of the sequence/instructions/processes
  • Cause and effect
  • Comparison and contrast

Students must be able to deconstruct these five text structures and examine their constituent parts in order to thoroughly comprehend and interpret informative texts, whether they are reading textbooks, news pieces, or works of literary nonfiction, among other things.

1. Description

This is a really basic procedure. Texts that follow this pattern simply express what they are about. With just a few exceptions, these books also include a great deal of information on the subject matter they are portraying. A text with this format could also have the following elements:

  • Describe the context in which something is being explained
  • Explain why the subject matter under discussion is vital. Give specific instances of the topic(s) being discussed

Descriptive writings may be found everywhere, including novels, works of literary nonfiction, news stories, and scientific textbooks, which is understandable given that the main purpose of description is to convey information to the reader.

2. Sequence/Instruction/Process

Descriptive writings may be found everywhere, including novels, works of literary nonfiction, news stories, and scientific textbooks, which is understandable given that the main purpose of description is to convey information to the reader or audience.

  • Instructions that follow a sequential format (e.g., step 1, step 2, step 3
  • Do this, then do that, and lastly do this)
  • Events that occurred in chronological order (this occurred first, then this occurred, then this occurred, etc.)
  • Arguments that rely on evidence to support a proposition (in which evidence is presented in descending order of persuasiveness)

When students read or write a work with this structure, the importance of order cannot be overstated. Texts that follow this structure often do not offer any events or instructions out of chronological sequence, as doing so would make it more difficult to follow their instructions. Consider the absurdity of a cake recipe in which the final step is to preheat the oven before baking the cake. It would merely be strange and perplexing to do so. Instructions that are poorly worded are just not worth your effort.

after before during earlier
eventually finally first from
how to in order last meanwhile
next now until while

3. Cause/Effect

Cause/Effect text structures clearly convey the causes and effects of events. It appears to be rather straightforward! However, when an effect has several sources, works that make advantage of this structure might become complicated (or vice versa). When students study historical materials, they will come across complicated examples of cause-and-effect relationships. Many historical events had more than one cause, many of which were interconnected in ways that were difficult to unravel. Listed below is a partial and non-exhaustive collection of terms and phrases that show that a text has been written in the cause-and-effect text structure:

because cause led to reason
accordingly effect result consequence

4. Compare/Contrast

This literary structure consists of a comparison of numerous objects that reveals how they are similar and how they are distinct from one another. Make certain that your pupils understand that comparing two or more items does not necessarily imply that they are either good or harmful in some way.

Comparisons only communicate the contrasts; as a result, one object may possess both good and bad characteristics. A non-exhaustive collection of terms and phrases that show that a work follows the comparison and contrast text structure is provided below:

alike also both comparable
even in common just as similar
although but despite difference
however instead otherwise unlike

5. Problem/Solution

This text structure is divided into two sections:

  • The author outlines a problem
  • The author then goes into depth on how to solve the problem.

Because it demands the use of other text structures, the Problem/Solution structure may be an extremely complicated text structure. Clearly, the author must provide a description of the situation. In order to argue in favor of their remedy, the author would most likely need to discuss the sources and consequences of the problem as well. Is it necessary to take a set of particular actions in order to put the author’s solution into action? Another structure is required for this. If the author want to discuss other possible solutions before explaining why their approach is the best one, what should he or she do?

What’s vital in this case, as it is in every writing in which an author marshals an argument, is that the author employs just the material necessary to advance the argument or disprove counterarguments, and that the author does not include any irrelevant information.

Students will benefit from being aware that elements of various text structures may emerge in the Problem/Solution one since it will help them assess the argument’s distinct components.

Are you looking for a series that makes it easy to teach informational material?

Throughout this series, readers will encounter tough nonfiction passages that adhere to the stringent criteria of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS).

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