Language Arts: Narrative vs. Expository Text

26 Sep

SUBJECT: English Language Arts

TARGET: You will understand the differences between narrative and expository text features.  Also you will be able to identify those features in your independent reading book.

ACADEMIC LANGUAGE: Narrative, expository, protagonist, antagonist, resolution, conflict

Reading GLE: 2.3.1. Analyze informational/expository text and literary/narrative text for similarities and differences and cause and effect relationships.

Every student in the 7th grade English Language Arts class is required to read for 30 minutes every night in an independent reading book.  This school does not have required reading for the 7th grade, as they have so many different levels of learning.  I can see the challenge of trying to track if students are actually doing their reading every night, but so far it is easy to see who is doing their work and who is not by going over their reading contracts with them in the very beginning of class.  I have a smiley face stamp that weirdly has helped a lot.  Who knew that 7th graders still love smiley faces?

This lesson was geared toward learning the differences between Narrative and Expository texts using examples of each, reading aloud a narrative short story, and using two different graphic organizers: a T-chart and a fictional organizer.  We used them in both direct instruction and for independent work.  We used an array of academic language as I mentioned above and left all of those words displayed throughout the lesson.

First we went through Narrative vs. Expository text by showing examples of each and asking what they thought they were, what clues they used to figure out what type of text they are reading and then went over this T-chart for a compare/contrast.  We decided to not go into expository as much for this lesson, but rather do a brief overview of it as we are doing an entire unit on expository text later in the year.

After we finished with that we went over the book “SEEDFOLKS” and read out loud the first chapter in this book, identifying it as a narrative text.  Once that was read we used a fictional organizer to map out the different context clues we got from the first chapter.

This was done with the students and they copied it into their notebooks.

After this they all went back to their seats and did a fictional organizer for their own independent reading books.  Here is one student’s example:


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