Main ideas should be derived from the text structure - determine the text structure and you should be able to determine the main idea!
This lesson contains six reading passages about toilet paper (what kid doesn't like to read about toilet paper?!?) designed to help students identify the different main ideas - chronological order, sequence, description, compare/contrast, problem and solution and cause and effect. From those text structures, students can use sentence frames to put together main ideas based on the information presented.
How to Use Text Structure to Determine Main Idea Handout
Main Idea Sentence Frames Handout
6 Passages about the same topic - Toilet Paper
Graphic Organizers for Topic, Text Structure, Main Idea, Details
Rubric for Grading Graphic Organizers