School Improvement in Maryland

Using the State Curriculum: Reading/ELA, Grade 2

Reading/ELA | Informational | Literary | Writing | Language | Listening | Speaking

Lesson Seeds: The lesson seeds are ideas for the indicator/objective that can be used to build a lesson. Lesson seeds are not meant to be all-inclusive, nor are they substitutes for instruction.

Standard 2.0 Comprehension of Informational Text

Indicator 4. Determine important ideas and messages in informational texts

Objective e. Distinguish between a fact and an opinion

Seed

Begin the lesson by defining fact and opinion. A fact is something that can be proven. An opinion is what someone believes or feels about something. Share examples that would be relevant to your students. For example: Fact — Our school is ten years old. Opinion — Our school is the best school in our county. Place the words fact and opinion on the white board. Prepare 10 more facts and opinions about your school on sentence strips and have students sort and post under the terms Fact and Opinion. The finished board could look like this:

FACT Opinion
  • Our school is 10 years old.
  • There are 12,000 books in the media center.
  • Our school is located in the smallest county in Maryland.
  • Our school colors are blue and gold.
  • Both boys and girls go to our school.
  • We eat lunch in the cafeteria at our school
  • Our school is the best school in our county.
  • Our media center has a great selection of books.
  • Our county has a lot of fun parks.
  • Blue is my favorite color.
  • I think that there should be separate schools for boys and girls.
  • The cafeteria serves nutritious and delicious meals at lunchtime.

Seed

Select an article from a grade appropriate issue of Time for Kids, Weekly Reader, or Scholastic News that has both fact and opinion statements in it. Ask students if they think that the article will have facts or opinions or both. Project the article electronically and read a portion that has both a fact and an opinion statement. Highlight a sentence that states a fact in yellow and a sentence that states an opinion in green. As you highlight the sentence, explain to the students your thinking. Have students continue in the article, asking them to highlight 1—2 factual statements and 1—2 opinion statements. Have students share and discuss highlighted sentences and explain the choices they made.

Seed

The teacher will read aloud an informational text that has examples of fact and opinion statements. An example would be the text Old Friends, New Friends by Denise Ferrell. The teacher will provide each student with "every pupil response" cards ("F" for fact and "O" for opinion). Ask the students to hold up their card as they hear facts and opinions read in select portions of the text. See chart below for examples from Old Friends, New Friends.

p.8 We played checkers with our buddies today. Fact
p.8 I stared at Mac's hands. Fact
p.8 They looked strong. Opinion
p.8 Our hands sure look different. Fact
p.10 We brought cookies to decorate today. Fact
p.11 We had no idea our buddies could eat so many cookies. Opinion
p.12 It snowed a lot yesterday. Fact
p.12 No school for me! Fact
p.12 I loved making a snowman, but I missed going to Early Autumns. Opinion
p.12 That's okay. Opinion
p.12 Mac will like getting mail from me. Opinion

Seed

Other books with a good mix of facts and opinions are Kitten Care: A Guide to Loving and Nurturing Your Pet by Kim Dennis-Bryan and All About Cats and Kittens by Emily Neye. Students could read these texts or selected portions of the text to label facts and opinions as pairs or independently.

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