School Improvement in Maryland

Using the State Curriculum: Reading/ELA, Grade 3

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 a. Identify and explain the author's/text's purpose and intended audience


Teacher will guide students as they brainstorm a list of reasons for which an author would write an informational text such as to help with directions, describe a procedure, or to explain an idea. Students may be given the name or topic of an informational text. Present students with several examples of informational texts for which a purpose has already been identified. During classroom discussion have students provide text-based support for each article's purpose. Next have students work with a partner. Rotate among the partners a series of informational passages for which they will determine a purpose and locate text-based support for the purpose. Assign each group an article to be presented to the entire class. During the presentation students must:

  • summarize the article
  • state its purpose
  • support its purpose from text


Provide students with an informational article. After reading, students will use an organizer developed by the teacher on which details from the article have been listed. Students will review the entire list of details and draw a conclusion about the purpose/s of the article. After determining the purpose, students will suggest an intended audience/s for whom this article will have importance. Students may continue to practice by using additional informational passages in which they will determine details that indicate purpose.

Details Purpose Intended Audience





Under teacher direction students will brainstorm reasons for which they would read a newspaper. In a newspaper find several different types of informational text such as an editorial, an advertisement, and a news story. Read each selection. Choose one text, and identify several different people who would read this text and why they would choose to read it. Next, determine a way the information in this text could be used in the real world. Assume the persona of another reader and explain to the entire class your interest in the text and how you would use this in your job or daily life.


Students will read an informational text. After reading the text, students will move into small groups. Each group will be given an envelope containing sentence strips. On the sentence strips the teacher will have written direct statements from text that state the author's purpose and details that support the author's purpose. The students will read and then divide the strips into two categories: statements of purpose and statements of support to determine the purpose of a text. After a teacher check, students will use Pass a Problem strategy to complete all the teacher-prepared envelopes. Teacher Note: Pass a Problem-When students have completed their first activity they are directed by the teacher to pass their problem/envelope to another group.

Resources for Objective 2.A.4.a:
LESSON SEEDS | Sample Assessments |