Nonfiction Organization Structures - Kuna School District

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Oct 21, 2013 (3 years and 9 months ago)

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Nonfiction
Organization
Structures

Six Common Nonfiction Structures

1.
Descriptive

2.
Sequential / Chronological

3.
Compare & Contrast

4.
Cause & Effect

5.
Problem & Solution

6.
Proposition & Support

Descriptive Nonfiction Structure


Presents a topic.


Provides details that help readers
understand characteristics of a person,
place, thing, or idea.


No specific signal words are typically
associated with descriptive structure.


Descriptive Nonfiction, continued…


When authors delineate a topic, they use
a descriptive structure.


Semantic maps (a graphic organizer that
resembles a spider web and groups
information by categories) provide a
visual representation for this structure.


Descriptive Nonfiction Example

1.
As a class, read the introduction to

HowStuffWorks
: Top 5 Inventions for
Kids” by
Johnathan

Atteberry
.

2.
In groups, read aloud your assigned
section.

3.
As a group, fill in the semantic map for
your section.

4.
One student from each group will fill in
their section of the larger semantic map
on the board.

Group
1

Group
2

Group
3

Group
4

Group
5

Top 5
Inventions for
Kids

Sequential / Chronological

Nonfiction Structure


The sequence structure involves putting
facts, events, or concepts in their order of
occurrence.


Signal words indicate the order of events
and include:



first



second



third




then



next



last




before



after



finally

Sequential / Chronological
Nonfiction, continued…


Authors use sequence when giving
directions for an experiment or explaining
the stages in an animal’s life cycle.


Series of events chains

are visual organizers
that use boxes and arrows to illustrate a
sequence of events and the steps in that
sequence.

Sequential / Chronological
Nonfiction Example


Read the passage from “Founders of the
Children’s Rain Forest” by Phillip
Hoose
.



Complete the
series of events chain

for the
passage.


Be sure to identify the transition words we just
discussed!

1
st

Event

2
nd

Event

3
rd

Event

4
th

Event

5
th

Event

6
th

Event

7
th

Event

8
th

Event

Transition Words?


Transition Words?


Transition Words?


Transition Words?


Transition Words?


Transition Words?


Transition Words?


Transition Words?


Comparison & Contrast

Nonfiction Structure


The comparison and contrast structure
involves identification of similarities and
differences between facts, concepts,
people, and so forth.


Authors use this style to compare and
contrast things such as crocodiles and
alligators.

Comparison & Contrast

Nonfiction Structure, continued…


Signal words indicate similarities and
differences are about to be discussed, and
include:



same as



alike



similar to



resembles



compared to



different from



unlike



but



yet

Comparison & Contrast

Nonfiction Structure, continued…


Venn diagrams use interlocking circles to
illustrate the similarities and differences
between two things.


Individual characteristics appear in the left and
right sections, while common characteristics
appear in the overlapping section.

Comparison & Contrast

Nonfiction Example (1)

“Two Toothy Reptiles”

Crocodiles and alligators are both reptiles. They both live on land, lay eggs, and
breath with lungs. Alligators and crocodiles look alike, too. Both have long, scaly
bodies, and long tails, short legs, and lots of teeth in huge jaws. However, when you
look closer, you can see some differences. The snout of an alligator is wide and
rounded, unlike the crocodile’s. The crocodile’s snout is pointy. Their teeth are
different, too. When an alligator closes its mouth, its bottom teeth are mostly hidden.
When a crocodile closes its mouth, though, you can still see its bottom teeth.

Comparison & Contrast

Nonfiction Example (2)

“Bird of Prey”

Owls are bird of prey. They are hunters. Owls are members of the raptor family.
Raptors hunt and kill their prey with their feet. Owls hunt at night. They eat things
like mice, rats, and rabbits. Owls live in holes in trees, empty buildings, or nests built
by other birds.

Another bird of prey is the osprey. A daytime hunter, this raptor dives for and
eats fish. Ospreys build nests by water. They use the same nests every year.


Characteristic

Owl

Osprey

Cause & Effect

Nonfiction Structure


The cause and effect structure includes a
description of cause and the resulting
effect.


As an example, when an author explains
the effects of an oil spill or the reasons
for animal extinction they use this
structure.

Cause & Effect

Nonfiction Structure, continued…


Signal words indicate include:



if



so



so that



because of



as a result of



since



in order to



cause



effect

Cause & Effect

Nonfiction Structure, continued…


Cause and effect maps use circles or
squares with connecting arrows to
illustrate relationships between cause and
resulting effects.

Cause & Effect

Nonfiction Example

The Flood

It rained heavily for five days. The river was very high. Finally, the river flooded its
banks, so nearby farm fields were covered with water. The price of corn was high that
year because so many crops were destroyed.


Wool

Wool clothing was vital in the cold winter months in colonial New England. As a result,
some colonies passed laws protecting sheep. In addition, each colonial family was
required to have its own wool spinner. Village leaders set quotas, or specific amounts,
of wool for the spinners to produce.


Causes of the Revolutionary War

Many events caused the Revolutionary War. In 1765, the British Parliament passed the
Stamp Act. The colonists were angry because they said it was taxation without
representation. The Stamp Act was repealed, but England found a new way to tax the
colonists. The Townshend Duties taxed goods that the colonists had to import from
England, like glass or tea. Then, the British set up a blockade in Boston Harbor to
prevent the colonists from getting goods from other sources. The colonists could take
no more. On April 18, 1775, the Revolutionary War began.

Cause & Effect

Nonfiction Example



Problem & Solution

Nonfiction Structure


The problem and solution structure
shows the development of a problem and
its solution.


Authors use this structure to explain why
inventions are created, why money was
invented, or why you should buy a
particular product.

Problem & Solution

Nonfiction Structure, continued…


Signal words include:


problem


solution


because


cause


since


as a result


so that

Problem & Solution

Nonfiction Structure, continued…


Problem / solution outlines visually
illustrate the problem
-
solving process by
defining components of a problem and
possible solutions.

Who?

What?

Where?

When?

Why?

How?

End

Result





Problem

Solution

Attempted
Solutions

1.


2.


Results


1.


2.

Proposition & Support

Nonfiction Structure


This structure presents a proposal and then
supports the proposal with evidence.


Authors often use this in persuasive writing
or speeches.


Proposition and support may follow this
pattern when presenting evidence:


Identifies the need for a solution


Presents facts, statistics, opinions, and anecdotes


Addresses counterarguments


Concludes with a restatement of the proposal

Proposition & Support

Nonfiction Structure, continued…


Signal words include:


viewpoint


opinion


idea


hypothesis


theory


proof


evidence


Proposition & Support

Nonfiction Example


Identify which statements are supporting
statements and which is the proposition:


A. Carrots contain no cholesterol.


B. Carrots contain Vitamin A.


C. Everyone should eat carrots.


D. Carrots are low in calories.

Proposition

______

Support

______

Support

______

Support

______