Winter Close Reading and Comprehension Passages with Text-Dependent Questions

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These winter-themed Text Time passages were are just what you need for ready-to-use comprehension and close reading practice. There are 20 winter themed passages, each presented at two reading levels (grades 3-4 and 4-5) for a total of 40 passages. The passages are a mix of high-interest and curriculum-based topics and include informational text and literature. The included text-dependent questions address a variety of close reading skills.

The Show What You Know questions on the right are identical for both reading levels. This allows you to discuss the passages all together, even if you have students using different levels.


The passages are sequenced in cycles of five as follows:

IT: Informational Text (nonfiction)
L: Literature (fiction)
IT: Informational Text (nonfiction) with an illustration
L: Literature (fiction)
IT: Informational Text (nonfiction)

Breakdown by type: 3/5 Informational Text, 2/5 Literature.

Within the 20 passages, there are three sets of paired passages. The paired passages appear adjacent to each other and address a similar topic for comparing and contrasting. Three additional printables are included to use with these paired passages. These passages will also work as stand alone activities if you do not want to use them together.

The skills addressed in each passage are written in small print at the bottom on the left-hand side. The skills address most of the RI and RL Common Core Standards and include: reading for details, main idea, summarizing, inference, predicting, genre setting/character/plot, theme, context clues/vocabulary, figurative language, author’s style, author’s purpose, point of view, mood/tone, text structure, comparing and contrasting, interpreting an illustration, analysis, and evaluation. They are also listed in the Table of Contents.

These passages are winter themed and are meant to be used primarily in January and February. Some of the passages can be used at almost anytime during winter, while others are tied to a specific holiday.

Answer keys for teacher use are provided. In many cases, answers will vary by student and sample answers are given.

These passages could be used for bell work, at a center or station, as part of a reading packet, with a small group, as homework, as enrichment for younger, highly capable students, as remediation for struggling students, or as test prep.

About the Author
All of these passages were written by me, Rachel Lynette. I am a published author of over 120 nonfiction books for children on a variety of subjects. I have written for publishers such as Harcourt, Thompson-Gale, Rosen, Children’s Press, Evan-Moor, and several others. You can find my books on Amazon (I also write under the names: Lynette Robbins and Tori Miller). These passages are no different than those you might find in any nonfiction book written for the school and library market.


Topics Included:

1. Avalanche!
2. Our Snowman Secret
3. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
4. Micah's Neighbors
5. Sitting In for Civil Rights (paired passage)
6. Sit-In at the Minute Inn (paired passage)
7. Why Evergreen Trees Keep their Leaves
8. Valentine's Day
9. The Night the Power Went Out
10. Barack Obama: The 44th President
11. The Flexible Flyer (paired passage)
12. How I Got My Flexible Flyer (paired passage)
13. Disappearing Polar Bears
14. Snowman Switch
15. The Iditarod (paired passage)
16. What About the Dogs? (paired passage)
17. A Snowman for Sasha
18. Oymyakon: The Coldest Town on Earth
19. Because of the Mittens
20. How Snowflakes Form

Also included: teacher answer keys, student annotation guide, and three printables to use with the 3 included paired passages.


You can get 60 More Text Time Passages right here!

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Everything included in this resource is licensed for single classroom use only. It may be photocopied by the original purchaser for his or her classroom only. It may not be put on the internet, sold, or distributed in any form. If you would like to share this product with your colleagues, please honor the time and energy put into it by purchasing multiple licenses on the product page on Teachers Pay Teachers. Thank you for respecting the copyright.


Happy Teaching!

Rachel Lynette
Total Pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
3 Months

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Winter Close Reading  and Comprehension Passages with Text
Winter Close Reading  and Comprehension Passages with Text
Winter Close Reading  and Comprehension Passages with Text
Winter Close Reading  and Comprehension Passages with Text