Main Idea of a Paragraph Graphic Organizer

Main Idea of a Paragraph Graphic Organizer
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I work with special education students in a small-group setting. I use this graphic organizer to help them determine the main idea of short paragraphs. That is the reason why there are 4 of them on the page. After reading a paragraph, I ask the students to identify the broad topic of the paragraph. Was it all about space? Fishing? A famous painter? Music? Just one to three words. After identifying the main topic, we analyze each sentence (the details) in the paragraph to find the key words that tell what important idea is presented in the sentence. We write the key words from each sentence in the detail boxes. Once we have analyzed each sentence, I ask them, "What about (broad topic) do these details tell us?" I may provide choices such as the history of the topic, how the topic was invented, who uses the topic, how the topic is used today, etc. It's a great way to organize the information for the students. My students like it because it does not involve a lot of writing!!! It is great for quick review and lessons.
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