Topic Sentence –the words the author of a text uses to express the main idea.
Main idea- the point being made or “big idea” being expressed.
Supporting details- evidence such as examples, facts, cases, reasons, statistics, and ideas given in a text to explain and prove the main idea.
Graphic organizer- an instructional tool that puts a visual structure on the page for students fill in.
Children often get overwhelmed by text and don’t know what is important and what isn’t. Using graphic organizers can help them pick out the main idea and important supporting evidence, summarize it in their own words, and present it in an interesting visual way.
All details are not created equal, and children need to be able to find and use evidence that supports the main idea instead of distracts from it. Details that support the main idea can themselves be either more important (major) or less so (minor).