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Finding Topics and Main Ideas                    Tools for                     reading                    nonfiction
What is a topic?A topic is the   word or phrase thateverything ina text refers   back to
What is a topic?Can you find the topic ofthe pictures?                    Streams
What is a topic?            Can you find             the topic of            the pictures?           Fish
Looking for a topic in text   Water is an amazing resource.Everyone in the world dependsupon it. Every creature needs wate...
Looking for a topic in textWater is an amazing resource.Everyone in the world dependsupon it. Every creature needs waterto...
The topic is waterWater is an amazing resource.Everyone in the world dependsupon it. Every creature needs waterto survive....
Look for repeated words  In the lastparagraph, the word waterwas repeated again and    again.
Look for repeated wordsLooking for   repeated words andphrases is agood way to find topics.
Can you find the topic?Colonial Williamsburg is a great place tovisit. In Williamsburg, you can see howpeople lived in col...
Can you find the topic?Colonial Williamsburg is a great place tovisit. In Williamsburg, you can see howpeople lived in col...
The topic was WilliamsburgWe could tellthis because  the wordWilliamsburgwas repeatedseveral times
But some paragraphs are trickySometimes,authors use  differentwords for the same thing
vegetables                    plantscrops      greens
Can you find the multiple referents?Colonial Williamsburg is a great place tovisit. In this Virginia town, you can seehow ...
Can you find the multiple referents?Colonial Williamsburg is a great place tovisit. In this Virginia town, you can seehow ...
Can you find the multiple referents?Colonial Williamsburg is a great place to visit. Inthis Virginia town, you can see how...
What is the topic of this paragraph?Assateague Island is a very special place.A long sandy beach stretches into theAtlanti...
What is the topic of this paragraph?Assateague Island is a very special place.A long sandy beach stretches into theAtlanti...
Finding Main Ideas   Once we  have found  the topic of      the  paragraph,  we can findthe main idea. Topic + Main Point ...
Can you find the main idea?   Water is an amazing resource.Everyone in the world dependsupon it. Every creature needs wate...
Can you find the main idea?Water is an amazing resource.Everyone in the world dependsupon it. Every creature needs waterto...
Can you find the main idea?Water is an amazing resource.Everyone in the world dependsupon it. Every creature needs waterto...
Can you find the main idea?Water is an amazing resource.Everyone in the world dependsupon it. Every creature needs waterto...
Finding Main Ideas  Notice that  topics areexpressed as   words or phrases, butmain ideas are expressed in  sentencesTopic...
Can you find the main idea?    Colonial Williamsburg is a great place tovisit. In Williamsburg, you can see how peoplelive...
Can you find the main idea?Colonial Williamsburg is a great place to visit.In Williamsburg, you can see how people livedin...
Did you find the main idea?Colonial Williamsburg is a great        Topic:place to visit. In Williamsburg, youcan see how p...
Where is the main idea?  In manyparagraphs,   the first sentence states the main idea.When the author states the main idea...
Where is the main idea?But the main idea is notalways in the     first  sentence.
Look for the explicit main idea Croak, croak, kerplop! What’s that at the water’s edge? It might be a green frog, a creatu...
Look for the explicit main ideaThe first sentence isnot the main idea.           Croak, croak, kerplop! What’s that at the...
Look for the explicit main ideaLet’s look forthe topic.            Croak, croak, kerplop! What’s that at the water’s      ...
Look for the explicit main ideaLet’s look forthe topic.            Croak, croak, kerplop! What’s that at the water’s      ...
What about the second              sentence?Main ideas are notusually expressed asquestions         Croak, croak, kerplop!...
What about the third sentence?This sentenceincludes thetopic           Croak, croak, kerplop! What’s that at the water’s  ...
This is called the topic sentence        It’s kind of silly that the sentence that states the        main idea is called t...
Finding the main ideaTo find the mainidea, figure out the topic first.Then, look for a sentence that states a mainpoint ab...
Try another paragraph What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. Thisis beca...
How do I find the main idea?Start by finding the topic     Then, read each sentence in the       paragraph      Find a ...
First, find the topic What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. Thisis beca...
First, find the topic What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. Thisis beca...
Read the rest of the sentences. What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. T...
Which one states a main point? What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. Th...
Which one states a main point? What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. Th...
Check the rest of the sentences What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. T...
Check the rest of the sentences What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park is agreat place to see the Cumberland Valley. T...
We’ve found the main idea* What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. Thisis...
Implicit main ideasMain ideas are  not alwaysstated directly. Sometimes,   they areimplicit, or left   unstated.
Figuring out implicit main ideasFairy shrimp swim upside down. If you watchthem closely, you might see that they have twos...
Find the topicFairy shrimp swim upside down. If you watchthem closely, you might see that they have twosets of antennae an...
Find the topicFairy shrimp swim upside down. If you watchthem closely, you might see that they have twosets of antennae an...
What are the sentences saying         about the topic?Fairy shrimp swim upside down. If you watchthem closely, you might s...
What are the sentences saying         about the topic?Fairy shrimp swimupside down. If you watchthem closely, you might se...
Make up a main ideaFairy shrimp swimupside down. If you watchthem closely, you might see that they have twosets of antenna...
There may be several similar optionsFairy shrimp swimupside down. If you watchthem closely, you might see that they have t...
Let’s try another oneThe last bits of sunlight were gleaming throughthe trees. A slight breeze blew, just enough tokeep th...
Find the topicThe last bits of sunlight were gleaming throughthe trees. A slight breeze blew, just enough tokeep the air f...
What are the sentences saying?The last bits of sunlight were gleaming throughthe trees. A slight breeze blew, just enough ...
Make up a main ideaThe last bits of sunlight were gleaming throughthe trees. A slight breeze blew, just enough tokeep the ...
What have you learned?What is the differencebetween atopic and amain idea?
What have you learned?A topic is stated in a word or            phraseA main idea includes the topic  and the main point, ...
What have you learned? What is animplicit main   idea?
What have you learned? An implicit main idea isnot stated directly by the         author
Does every paragraph work like            this?A. Yes! Every paragraph in the whole   universe is like this and you will  ...
Does every paragraph work like              this?• The answer, of course, is B• Some paragraphs do not follow  this struct...
These guidelines usually work 1. Find the topic of the paragraph 2. See if the first sentence states the main    idea 3. I...
Can you find the frog?
Can you find the frog?
What have you learned about       main ideas?
By Emily Kissnerhttp://emilykissner.blogspot.comUpdated 2012Feel free to use in your classroom or for staffdevelopment. Pl...
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Topics and main ideas

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Transcript of "Topics and main ideas"

  1. 1. Finding Topics and Main Ideas Tools for reading nonfiction
  2. 2. What is a topic?A topic is the word or phrase thateverything ina text refers back to
  3. 3. What is a topic?Can you find the topic ofthe pictures? Streams
  4. 4. What is a topic? Can you find the topic of the pictures? Fish
  5. 5. Looking for a topic in text Water is an amazing resource.Everyone in the world dependsupon it. Every creature needs waterto survive. Without water, we wouldnot last long. Water makes ourworld beautiful.
  6. 6. Looking for a topic in textWater is an amazing resource.Everyone in the world dependsupon it. Every creature needs waterto survive. Without water, we wouldnot last long. Water makes ourworld beautiful.
  7. 7. The topic is waterWater is an amazing resource.Everyone in the world dependsupon it. Every creature needs waterto survive. Without water, we wouldnot last long. Water makes ourworld beautiful.
  8. 8. Look for repeated words In the lastparagraph, the word waterwas repeated again and again.
  9. 9. Look for repeated wordsLooking for repeated words andphrases is agood way to find topics.
  10. 10. Can you find the topic?Colonial Williamsburg is a great place tovisit. In Williamsburg, you can see howpeople lived in colonial times. There areguides in costumes who can show you totaverns, shops, and houses. You can evensample some colonial food at the restoredtaverns! One visit to Williamsburg willmake you feel as if you have beentransported to the 1700s.
  11. 11. Can you find the topic?Colonial Williamsburg is a great place tovisit. In Williamsburg, you can see howpeople lived in colonial times. There areguides in costumes who can show you totaverns, shops, and houses. You can evensample some colonial food at the restoredtaverns! One visit to Williamsburg willmake you feel as if you have beentransported to the 1700s.
  12. 12. The topic was WilliamsburgWe could tellthis because the wordWilliamsburgwas repeatedseveral times
  13. 13. But some paragraphs are trickySometimes,authors use differentwords for the same thing
  14. 14. vegetables plantscrops greens
  15. 15. Can you find the multiple referents?Colonial Williamsburg is a great place tovisit. In this Virginia town, you can seehow people lived in colonial times. Thereare guides in costumes who can show youto taverns, shops, and houses. You can evensample some colonial food at the restoredtaverns! One visit to this place will makeyou feel as if you have been transported tothe 1700s.
  16. 16. Can you find the multiple referents?Colonial Williamsburg is a great place tovisit. In this Virginia town, you can seehow people lived in colonial times. Thereare guides in costumes who can show youto taverns, shops, and houses. You can evensample some colonial food at the restoredtaverns! One visit to this place will makeyou feel as if you have been transported tothe 1700s.
  17. 17. Can you find the multiple referents?Colonial Williamsburg is a great place to visit. Inthis Virginia town, you can see how people lived incolonial times. There are guides in costumes whocan show you to taverns, shops, and houses. You caneven sample some colonial food at the restoredtaverns! One visit to this place will make you feel asif you have been transported to the 1700s.The topic is still Williamsburg, even though the word is onlystated once.
  18. 18. What is the topic of this paragraph?Assateague Island is a very special place.A long sandy beach stretches into theAtlantic Ocean. Windswept dunes arehome to foxes and seagulls. The famouswild horses, or ponies, also live on thissmall island.
  19. 19. What is the topic of this paragraph?Assateague Island is a very special place.A long sandy beach stretches into theAtlantic Ocean. Windswept dunes arehome to foxes and seagulls. The famouswild horses, or ponies, also live on thissmall island.
  20. 20. Finding Main Ideas Once we have found the topic of the paragraph, we can findthe main idea. Topic + Main Point about the Topic = MAIN IDEA
  21. 21. Can you find the main idea? Water is an amazing resource.Everyone in the world dependsupon it. Every creature needs waterto survive. Without water, we wouldnot last long. Water makes ourworld beautiful.
  22. 22. Can you find the main idea?Water is an amazing resource.Everyone in the world dependsupon it. Every creature needs waterto survive. Without water, we wouldnot last long. Water makes ourworld beautiful.
  23. 23. Can you find the main idea?Water is an amazing resource.Everyone in the world dependsupon it. Every creature needs waterto survive. Without water, we wouldnot last long. Water makes ourworld beautiful. Topic: Water Main point about the topic:
  24. 24. Can you find the main idea?Water is an amazing resource.Everyone in the world dependsupon it. Every creature needs waterto survive. Without water, we wouldnot last long. Water makes ourworld beautiful. Topic: Water Main point about the topic: Water is an amazing resource
  25. 25. Finding Main Ideas Notice that topics areexpressed as words or phrases, butmain ideas are expressed in sentencesTopic + Main Point about the Topic = MAIN IDEA
  26. 26. Can you find the main idea? Colonial Williamsburg is a great place tovisit. In Williamsburg, you can see how peoplelived in colonial times. There are guides incostumes who can show you to taverns, shops,and houses. You can even sample some colonialfood at the restored taverns! One visit toWilliamsburg will make you feel as if you havebeen transported to the 1700s.
  27. 27. Can you find the main idea?Colonial Williamsburg is a great place to visit.In Williamsburg, you can see how people livedin colonial times. There are guides in costumeswho can show you to taverns, shops, andhouses. You can even sample some colonialfood at the restored taverns! One visit toWilliamsburg will make you feel as if you havebeen transported to the 1700s.
  28. 28. Did you find the main idea?Colonial Williamsburg is a great Topic:place to visit. In Williamsburg, youcan see how people lived in colonial Williamsburgtimes. There are guides in costumeswho can show you totaverns, shops, and houses. You can Main idea:even sample some colonial food at therestored taverns! One visit to Williamsburg isWilliamsburg will make you feel as if a great place toyou have been transported to the1700s. visit
  29. 29. Where is the main idea? In manyparagraphs, the first sentence states the main idea.When the author states the main idea, it is called anexplicit main idea.
  30. 30. Where is the main idea?But the main idea is notalways in the first sentence.
  31. 31. Look for the explicit main idea Croak, croak, kerplop! What’s that at the water’s edge? It might be a green frog, a creature that’s well-suited for life at the pond’s edge. Green frogs like to live where the land meets the water. This keeps them safe from predators that live on the land. When a predator like a snake comes near, the green frog can quickly leap into the water and get away. Green frogs can eat animals from both places, including crayfish, spiders, fish, and even birds.
  32. 32. Look for the explicit main ideaThe first sentence isnot the main idea. Croak, croak, kerplop! What’s that at the water’s edge? It might be a green frog, a creature that’s well-suited for life at the pond’s edge. Green frogs like to live where the land meets the water. This keeps them safe from predators that live on the land. When a predator like a snake comes near, the green frog can quickly leap into the water and get away. Green frogs can eat animals from both places, including crayfish, spiders, fish, and even birds.
  33. 33. Look for the explicit main ideaLet’s look forthe topic. Croak, croak, kerplop! What’s that at the water’s edge? It might be a green frog, a creature that’s well-suited for life at the pond’s edge. Green frogs like to live where the land meets the water. This keeps them safe from predators that live on the land. When a predator like a snake comes near, the green frog can quickly leap into the water and get away. Green frogs can eat animals from both places, including crayfish, spiders, fish, and even birds.
  34. 34. Look for the explicit main ideaLet’s look forthe topic. Croak, croak, kerplop! What’s that at the water’s edge? It might be a green frog, a creature that’s well-suited for life at the pond’s edge. Green frogs like to live where the land meets the water. This keeps them safe from predators that live on the land. When a predator like a snake comes near, the green frog can quickly leap into the water and get away. Green frogs can eat animals from both places, including crayfish, spiders, fish, and even birds.
  35. 35. What about the second sentence?Main ideas are notusually expressed asquestions Croak, croak, kerplop! What’s that at the water’s edge? It might be a green frog, a creature that’s well-suited for life at the pond’s edge. Green frogs like to live where the land meets the water. This keeps them safe from predators that live on the land. When a predator like a snake comes near, the green frog can quickly leap into the water and get away. Green frogs can eat animals from both places, including crayfish, spiders, fish, and even birds.
  36. 36. What about the third sentence?This sentenceincludes thetopic Croak, croak, kerplop! What’s that at the water’s edge?It might be a green frog, a creature that’s well- suited for life at the pond’s edge. Green frogs like to live where the land meets the water. This keeps them safe from predators that live on the land. It also makes a When a predator like a snake comes near, the green main point frog can quickly leap into the water and get away. Green frogs can eat animals about the topic from both places, including crayfish, spiders, fish, and even birds.
  37. 37. This is called the topic sentence It’s kind of silly that the sentence that states the main idea is called the topic sentence, but that’s just the way it is. Croak, croak, kerplop! What’s that at the water’s edge?It might be a green frog, a creature that’s well- suited for life at the pond’s edge. Green frogs like to live where the land meets the water. This keeps them safe from predators that live on the land. When a predator like a snake comes near, the green frog can quickly leap into the water and get away. Green frogs can eat animals from both places, including crayfish, spiders, fish, and even birds.
  38. 38. Finding the main ideaTo find the mainidea, figure out the topic first.Then, look for a sentence that states a mainpoint about the topic.
  39. 39. Try another paragraph What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. Thisis because the park was built on top of amountain. From the mountain top, the fields andfarms of the valley stretch out far below. TheDoubling Gap, a mountain that curves like theletter s, can also be seen.
  40. 40. How do I find the main idea?Start by finding the topic Then, read each sentence in the paragraph Find a sentence that states the topic and a main point about the topic
  41. 41. First, find the topic What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. Thisis because the park was built on top of amountain. From the mountain top, the fields andfarms of the valley stretch out far below. TheDoubling Gap, a mountain that curves like theletter s, can also be seen.
  42. 42. First, find the topic What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. Thisis because the park was built on top of amountain. From the mountain top, the fields andfarms of the valley stretch out far below. TheDoubling Gap, a mountain that curves like theletter s, can also be seen.
  43. 43. Read the rest of the sentences. What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. Thisis because the park was built on top of amountain. From the mountain top, the fields andfarms of the valley stretch out far below. TheDoubling Gap, a mountain that curves like theletter s, can also be seen.
  44. 44. Which one states a main point? What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. Thisis because the park was built on top of amountain. From the mountain top, the fields andfarms of the valley stretch out far below. TheDoubling Gap, a mountain that curves like theletter s, can also be seen.
  45. 45. Which one states a main point? What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. Thisis because the park was built on top of amountain. From the mountain top, the fields andfarms of the valley stretch out far below. TheDoubling Gap, a mountain that curves like theletter s, can also be seen.
  46. 46. Check the rest of the sentences What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. Thisis because the park was built on top of amountain. From the mountain top, the fields andfarms of the valley stretch out far below. TheDoubling Gap, a mountain that curves like theletter s, can also be seen.
  47. 47. Check the rest of the sentences What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park is agreat place to see the Cumberland Valley. This isbecause the park was built on top of a mountain.From the mountain top, the fields and farms of thevalley stretch out far below. The Doubling Gap, amountain that curves like the letter s, can also beseen.All of the sentences relate back toKings Gap as a great place to view theCumberland Valley
  48. 48. We’ve found the main idea* What a gorgeous view! Kings Gap State Park isa great place to see the Cumberland Valley. Thisis because the park was built on top of amountain. From the mountain top, the fields andfarms of the valley stretch out far below. TheDoubling Gap, a mountain that curves like theletter s, can also be seen.*also known as the topic sentence
  49. 49. Implicit main ideasMain ideas are not alwaysstated directly. Sometimes, they areimplicit, or left unstated.
  50. 50. Figuring out implicit main ideasFairy shrimp swim upside down. If you watchthem closely, you might see that they have twosets of antennae and eleven sets of legs. Fairyshrimp move by beating their legs from back tofront. In their vernal pool, they can dart aroundquickly, drift slowly, or even settle at the bottomof the pool.
  51. 51. Find the topicFairy shrimp swim upside down. If you watchthem closely, you might see that they have twosets of antennae and eleven sets of legs. Fairyshrimp move by beating their legs from back tofront. In their vernal pool, they can dart aroundquickly, drift slowly, or even settle at the bottomof the pool.
  52. 52. Find the topicFairy shrimp swim upside down. If you watchthem closely, you might see that they have twosets of antennae and eleven sets of legs. Fairyshrimpmove by beating their legs from back tofront. In their vernal pool, they can dart aroundquickly, drift slowly, or even settle at the bottomof the pool.
  53. 53. What are the sentences saying about the topic?Fairy shrimp swim upside down. If you watchthem closely, you might see that they have twosets of antennae and eleven sets of legs. Fairyshrimp move by beating their legs from back tofront. In their vernal pool, they can dart aroundquickly, drift slowly, or even settle at the bottomof the pool.
  54. 54. What are the sentences saying about the topic?Fairy shrimp swimupside down. If you watchthem closely, you might see that they have twosets of antennae and eleven sets of legs. Fairyshrimpmoveby beating their legs from back tofront. In their vernal pool, they can dart aroundquickly, drift slowly, or even settle at the bottomof the pool. All of the sentences seem to be about how fairy shrimp move.
  55. 55. Make up a main ideaFairy shrimp swimupside down. If you watchthem closely, you might see that they have twosets of antennae and eleven sets of legs. Fairyshrimpmoveby beating their legs from back tofront. In their vernal pool, they can dart aroundquickly, drift slowly, or even settle at the bottomof the pool. What is the paragraph telling us about the movement of fairy shrimp?
  56. 56. There may be several similar optionsFairy shrimp swimupside down. If you watchthem closely, you might see that they have twosets of antennae and eleven sets of legs. Fairyshrimpmoveby beating their legs from back tofront. In their vernal pool, they can dart aroundquickly, drift slowly, or even settle at the bottomof the pool. Fairy shrimp can move Fairy shrimp can move in effectively. several ways.
  57. 57. Let’s try another oneThe last bits of sunlight were gleaming throughthe trees. A slight breeze blew, just enough tokeep the air feeling fresh and clear. The forestbeyond was a wall of shadowed green. In thedistance, the murmurs of the creek echoedfaintly, joined every now and again by an eveningbird call. Everyone sat on the porch, relaxing.
  58. 58. Find the topicThe last bits of sunlight were gleaming throughthe trees. A slight breeze blew, just enough tokeep the air feeling fresh and clear. The forestbeyond was a wall of shadowed green. In thedistance, the murmurs of the creek echoedfaintly, joined every now and again by an eveningbird call. Everyone sat on the porch, relaxing. It seems to be describing a scene
  59. 59. What are the sentences saying?The last bits of sunlight were gleaming throughthe trees. A slight breeze blew, just enough tokeep the air feeling fresh and clear. The forestbeyond was a wall of shadowed green. In thedistance, the murmurs of the creek echoedfaintly, joined every now and again by an eveningbird call. Everyone sat on the porch, relaxing.How do the sentences describe the scene?
  60. 60. Make up a main ideaThe last bits of sunlight were gleaming throughthe trees. A slight breeze blew, just enough tokeep the air feeling fresh and clear. The forestbeyond was a wall of shadowed green. In thedistance, the murmurs of the creek echoedfaintly, joined every now and again by an eveningbird call. Everyone sat on the porch, relaxing.The view from the porch was peaceful.
  61. 61. What have you learned?What is the differencebetween atopic and amain idea?
  62. 62. What have you learned?A topic is stated in a word or phraseA main idea includes the topic and the main point, and is stated in a sentence
  63. 63. What have you learned? What is animplicit main idea?
  64. 64. What have you learned? An implicit main idea isnot stated directly by the author
  65. 65. Does every paragraph work like this?A. Yes! Every paragraph in the whole universe is like this and you will never have to think hard againB. No, some paragraphs are different. Sometimes the paragraph has the topic sentence at the end of the paragraph. Sometimes the main idea is very hard to find.
  66. 66. Does every paragraph work like this?• The answer, of course, is B• Some paragraphs do not follow this structure because the author wants to make the reader think more carefully• And sometimes the paragraphs are just poorly written!
  67. 67. These guidelines usually work 1. Find the topic of the paragraph 2. See if the first sentence states the main idea 3. If not, check other sentences in the paragraph 4. Find the sentence that includes the topic and states a main point about the topic 5. Make sure that the other sentences in the paragraph relate back to the main idea
  68. 68. Can you find the frog?
  69. 69. Can you find the frog?
  70. 70. What have you learned about main ideas?
  71. 71. By Emily Kissnerhttp://emilykissner.blogspot.comUpdated 2012Feel free to use in your classroom or for staffdevelopment. Please do not re-post to other sites.A downloadable version of this file isavailable here:http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Topics-and-Main-Ideas-Powerpoint
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