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13 Apps & Sites to Find Informational Text

July 30, 2014

Informational text is an important feature of teaching students about the natural and social world and a key element of Common Core in today’s classrooms. Informational text varies from general non-fiction because of a few features—most notably that the information is structured in a way that helps students learn. For teachers looking to learn more about what informational text is, Scholastic has a great article that gives a general overview and its importance in the classroom.

13 Informational Text Resources for Teachers

Students need to have a balance of literature and informational text.  If you’re looking for sites that include nonfiction passages or high-interest articles here are a few worth exploring:

  1. Scholastic News
  2. Life on Earth
  3. Readworks
  4. Newsela
  5. Nearpod
  6. DOGO News
  7. CNN 10
  8. Time for Kids
  9. LeVar Burton Kids Skybrary
  10. Epic!
  11. News-O-Matic
  12. Smithsonian Tween Tribune
  13. Channel One News

How to Use Informational Text in Your Classroom

Informational text is a tool teachers can use to focus on close reading, teach vocabulary in context, and introduce students to a variety of rich and complex subjects through reading. Using this type of non-fiction literature as the introduction to critical thinking and discussion in your classroom is a great way to get your students ready for deeper understanding of topics.

  • Ask students to use information from text documents to support their arguments when discussing or collaborating.
  • Provide opportunities for other students to build on each other’s observations and insights gathered from text.
  • Provide tools and resources for students to build on what they’ve learned from text, such as in-classroom experiments and activities that demonstrate what they’ve learned.
  • Ask students to use the vocabulary they learned in text in their discussions and collaborations.
  • Take students beyond the basics provided by text and dig into smaller details of what they’ve learned through additional activities.
  • Ensure that the text provides new information and insight and is at the students’ reading level.

Informational text can be a great resource and jumping point to introduce your students to more complex and nuanced topics.

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Dr. Monica Burns is a former classroom teacher, Author, Speaker, and Curriculum & EdTech Consultant. Visit her site for more ideas on how to become a tech-savvy teacher.

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