School Improvement in Maryland

Using the State Curriculum: Reading/ELA, Grade 4

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 f. Identify and explain relationships between and among ideas such as comparison/contrast, cause/effect, sequence/chronology


Provide students with two informational passages. As they read each passage, students should write key ideas on post it notes. Use a different color post-it note for each passage. When students have read both passages, have them arrange/group the post-its according to the shared ideas in both passages. Have students verbalize the shared ideas between the passages.


Students will read an informational passage. The teacher will identify two different relationships that exist within the passage. They may be cause/effect, comparison/contrast, or sequence. Have students determine what, if any, relationship exists between the two identified ideas. If a relationship exists, have students create an appropriate graphic organizer that shows both relationships. This procedure can be done with students in small groups, each group reading a different passage.


Have students read 2 informational passages in which the message is the same. Identify the message for students. Students should return to the texts and on a divided chart record for each passage the details and the examples each author used to support his/her message. When both are complete have students compare and contrast the information from both passages and determine which passage they thought was the most effective. This procedure can also be done with main idea.


First model the following procedure with students. Review with students the organization and purpose of multiple graphic organizers. Present students with an informational passage. Students should read the passage and select the best organizer to convey the relationship among ideas in the text. Complete the organizer and present the information to the entire class.