July 22, 2015
By Dee Mulhern

Lesson plan

Searching for Text Features

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Do you need extra help for EL students? Try the Text Features and Their PurposesPre-lesson.
EL Adjustments
GradeSubjectView aligned standards
Do you need extra help for EL students? Try the Text Features and Their PurposesPre-lesson.
  • Students will be able to identify informational text features and explain how the features contribute to a better understanding of the text.
The adjustment to the whole group lesson is a modification to differentiate for children who are English learners.
EL adjustments
(10 minutes)
  • Walk students through one of your informational texts.
  • Ask students to describe what makes this book different than an ordinary fiction picture book. (It is expected that students will point out charts, graphs, and other examples of text features.)
  • Review with students the purpose of text features. Text featuresAdd important details and information to the story. Authors use text structures to further explain their topic. Good readers use text structures to deepen their understanding.
  • Give some examples of text features: graph, diagram, map, index, glossary, chart, table, and picture.
(15 minutes)
  • Make sure to review each type of text feature and its purpose with the book you used during the introduction.
  • Bring out your chart paper and display it.
  • Emphasize that the purpose of text features is to deepen the readers' understanding of the text. As you model analyzing each feature, explain how it helps you better understand the text.
(15 minutes)
  • Explain to students that today they will be going on a scavenger hunt to look for different examples of text features.
  • They will need to find all of the text features on their list and record page numbers next to each text feature.
  • Students may work with a partner to find the text features. Provide each pair of students with an informational text.
  • Early finishers may repeat the scavenger hunt with a second book.
(15 minutes)
  • Briefly go over the text features students found in their books.
  • Have students label a blank bingo card with text features of their choice.
  • Read aloud your second informational text. Students will play bingo while looking for text features as you read.


  • Challenge advanced students to find text features in their independent reading. You may also have them look for text features in a local newspaper.


  • Have students in need of additional support focus on finding only one or two text structures at a time. For example, you may have each of them look through several books to find all the informational graphs.
(10 minutes)
  • Walk around the room during Guided practise. Focus on asking students what the author is trying to explain with each text feature.
  • Ask students how particular text features enhance their understanding.
  • Collect the scavenger hunts and review them later to assess student comprehension.
(10 minutes)
  • Review with students the importance of text features.
  • Ask students to describe examples of text features.
  • Remind students that whenever they read informational texts, they should take time to examine the features on the pages.

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