CCRA.R.5 - Analyze the structure of texts, including how specific sentences, paragraphs, and larger portions of the text (e.g., a section, chapter, scene, or stanza) relate to each other and the whole.
In kindergarten, students recognize types of texts (such as storybooks or poems). First grade readers are asked to tell the difference between fiction and non-fiction. And second graders work on the role of the beginning, middle, and end of a story. By third grade, students are ready to learn the parts of each type of literature and discuss how the parts build on one another to create the whole with this standard:
RL.3.5 - Refer to parts of stories dramas, and poems when writing or speaking about a text, using terms such as chapter, scene, and stanza; describe how each successive part builds on earlier sections.
In fourth grade, students begin a more in-depth look at the structure of each type of literature. By the end of the year, they should be able to compare and contrast the structural elements of poetry, plays, and prose.
RL.4.5 - Explain major difference between poems, drama, and prose, and refer to the structural elements of a poem (e.g., verse, rhythm, meter) and drama (e.g. casts of characters, settings, descriptions, dialogue, stage directions) when writing or speaking about a text.
Poetry is a biggie here. Fourth graders need to know terms and definitions, as well as identify them in text. A few slides from a presentation I use to introduce structural elements of poetry in my class illustrate this.
In fifth grade, students begin looking at the overall structure of a piece. Here's the standard:
RL.5.5 - Explain how a series of chapters, scenes, or stanzas fits together to provide the overall structure of a particular story, drama, or poem.
More has been created in relationship to the overall structure of nonfiction text, but this table, found on the TCI website, will give you an idea of some structural patterns for fiction. A 60-minute professional development video on this topic is also available on their site.
Today we took a really quick look at text structure. I'll bet some of you have some awesome ideas for teaching it in your classroom. We'd love it if you'd share!