Reading for Information

The emphasis on reading for information in the Common Core Standards is a big change for many teachers.  Here are a few lesson plans to help.  There are more coming.

Reading for Information Lesson Plans and Links

  1. Bill of Rights Lesson Plan
  2. “I Have a Dream” Lesson Plan with an “I Have a Dream” Analysis

Common Core Standards on Reading for Information

These standards begin with the 9th and 10th grade level.  There is a gradual progression once the student reaches 11th and 12th grade.

RI.9-10.1 Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.

  • Commentary: This standard should sound familiar. It’s the same exact standard as RL. 9-10.1 except it’s intended for informational reading. For those whose past experience has involved little teaching of informational reading, the easiest way to begin incorporating this standard is to find a piece of informational writing, pair it up with a piece of literature, and do the same type of assignment.
  • For example, while reading Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men or “Dreams” by Langston Hughes, you could throw in Martin Luther King’s I have a dream speech and complete a similar assignment. Or you could just click the link I provided above.

RI.9-10.2  Determine a central idea of a text and analyze its development over the course of the text, including how it emerges and is shaped and refined by specific details; provide an objective summary of the text.
RI.9-10.3 Analyze how the author unfolds an analysis or series of ideas or events, including the order in which the points are made, how they are introduced and developed, and the connections that are drawn between them. Craft and Structure
RI.9-10.4 Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative, connotative, and technical meanings; analyze the cumulative impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone (e.g., how the language of a court opinion differs from that of a newspaper).

  • Commentary: Once again, standards RI 2-4 are eerily similar to RL 2-4. You probably figured that out. I won’t waste your time mentioning that you could use similar assignments with a change in the type of reading.

RI.9-10.5 Analyze in detail how an author’s ideas or claims are developed and refined by particular sentences, paragraphs, or larger portions of a text (e.g., a section or chapter).
RI.9-10.6 Determine an author’s point of view or purpose in a text and analyze how an author uses rhetoric to advance that point of view or purpose.
RI.9-10.7  Analyze various accounts of a subject told in different mediums (e.g., a person’s life story in both print and multimedia), determining which details are emphasized in each account.

  • Commentary: I’m going to save time and just tell you to read the above commentary.

RI.9-10.8 Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, assessing whether the reasoning is valid and the evidence is relevant and sufficient; identify false statements and fallacious reasoning.

  • Commentary: Oh my, this sounds like it might be hard! Students not only must read essays, speeches and other types of informational pieces, but they must understand what the writer’s argument is and find faults with it.

RI.9-10.9 Analyze seminal U.S. documents of historical and literary significance (e.g., Washington’s Farewell Address, the Gettysburg Address, Roosevelt’s Four Freedoms speech, King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail”), including how they address related themes and concepts. Range of Reading and Level of Text Complexity

  • Commentary: We’re still allowed to teach things like the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution. Yes, they do have a place in an English classroom, even in California.

RI.9-10.10  By the end of grade 9, read and comprehend literary nonfiction in the grades 9-10 text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at the high end of the range. By the end of grade 10, read and comprehend literary nonfiction at the high end of the grades 9-10 text complexity band independently and proficiently.