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Compare and Contrast Nonfiction Reading Response Essay Writing Unit

Grade Levels
3rd - 4th
Formats Included
  • Zip
50 pages
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  1. “Great resource for teaching written response for state testing. I love the interactive nature and the natural flow of the ‘I do, We do, you do.’” Delaney D. (Reading Response Essay Writing) “When prepping students for high stakes testing, reading paired texts and responding by writing a constructed
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This unit has a total of 6 reading passages, teacher and student anchor charts, and 10 days of lesson plans to assist your students in learning all of the necessary skills to write an essay that compares and contrasts two different passages on the same topic. This is a great unit for test prep writing practice.

This unit is intended to be used over a two-week time frame, but this can easily be adjusted to meet your needs.

This unit was written with 3rd and 4th grade in mind. I suggest looking over the preview to determine if it is a good fit for your specific class.

Included in this unit:

  • Detailed teacher directions and suggestions for simple implementation
  • 10 days of lesson plans that include guiding questions, materials, mini lessons, student work tasks, and student share tasks
  • 6 original informational passages (3 pairs of passages on the same topic. These will be used for mini lessons, student tasks, and an extra set is included that can be used for more practice or as an assessment)
  • 12 teacher anchor charts (blank and filled in versions)
  • 9 Student anchor charts and printables
  • Rubrics
  • Publishing paper

Lessons Included:

  • How to mark up the text
  • Compare and contrast using a T-chart
  • Drafting comparison and contrasting paragraphs
  • How to refer to the text
  • Drafting introduction and conclusion paragraphs
  • Editing
  • Publishing

A Typical Day:

Mini Lesson:

The unit includes 10 lesson plans with a suggested mini lesson. The lessons include the use of 2 passages (that are included in the unit) and anchor charts. Teacher versions of the anchor chart are included in the unit so that the teacher can project them and fill them out with the class, or print them and display in the classroom. Small versions are included for the students to fill out and keep in their writing notebooks as a reference and to help draft their essay.

Work Time:

Students will be applying the skill from the mini lesson into their writing each day. The students will have 2 passages (Football and Rugby) that they will use to compare and contrast during this time.

Share Time:

Lesson plans include a specific task for students each day that allows them to share some piece of their writing with a partner or with the class.

How can I use this resource in my classroom?

There are many ways that this resource can be used. Here are some ideas:

  • Whole group reading lesson
  • Reading small group lesson
  • Writing workshop

Please let me know if you have any questions.


More writing units:

Compare and Contrast Fiction

Text Dependent Opinion

Reading Response

Second Grade (Narrative, Opinion & Informational)

Third Grade (Narrative, Opinion & Informational)

Fourth Grade (Narrative, Opinion & Informational)

Fifth Grade (Narrative, Opinion & Informational)


Total Pages
50 pages
Answer Key
Rubric only
Teaching Duration
2 Weeks
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas and information clearly.
Compare and contrast the most important points and key details presented in two texts on the same topic.


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