- Slides: 20
Main Idea • The main idea tells you what the story is about or the central thought of a paragraph or complete text. • Complete stories have main ideas. • Individual paragraphs within stories also have main ideas • The main idea may be the lesson learned or moral of a story.
Identifying Main Idea § Often the reader can find the main idea just by looking at the title or the first sentence of a paragraph. § For example, a passage titled: “Why Students Should Have Less Homework” will be about why students should have less homework!
Identify the Main Idea: • Homeless people have many problems. In winter, it’s hard to stay warm and it gets too hot in summer. It’s also hard to keep things safe without a home. Worst is the lack of privacy. • Main Idea:
Answer: • Homeless people have many problems.
Stated and Implied Main Idea • Sometimes, a paragraph has a stated main idea usually in the topic sentence. This means the paragraph “says” what the main idea is. • Sometimes, a paragraph doesn’t have a stated main idea, but has an “implied” main idea. • When the main idea is implied, you must analyze supporting details to make an inference, or educated guess, about the main idea.
Supporting Details • The supporting details are things that describe the main idea. • These supporting details make the main idea stronger. • Use the chart in your notes in order to collect supporting details. • Analyze the details in order to find the implied main idea.
Read the Passage and Choose the Main Idea • Niagara Falls is one of the most beautiful sights in North America. It is on the Niagara River halfway between Lake Ontario and Lake Erie. Niagara Falls is located on the American and Canadian border. The American Falls is 167 feet high. On the Canadian side, the Horseshoe Falls is 161 feet high.
Question What is the main idea of the passage? Remember: main idea is what the story is about. Complete the graphic organizer in your notes. List the main idea and four supporting details. Re-read the passage if you need to.
Lets Practice! Choose the Main Idea of the following Passages. • The Statue of Liberty is visited by thousands of people every year. The Statue of Liberty is a 151 foot statue of a woman holding a book and a torch. It was a gift of friendship from the people of France. It has become the universal symbol for freedom.
Question • What is the main idea of this passage? • What was the passage about?
Answer: The Statue of Liberty is an interesting place visited by many people each year.
Find the Supporting Details in this Passage • The Erie Canal changed the way people moved goods in the 1800’s. The 363 mile canal connected Albany, New York to Lake Erie in Buffalo for the first time. When the Canal opened in 1825, building supplies and goods could be transported quickly and cheaply across New York State. Canal boats pulled by mules carried people and supplies across New York.
Question Main Idea: Lake Erie changed the way people moved goods. • What are the supporting details of this passage? • Remember supporting details describe the main idea.
Answer • Supporting Details: • 1 -The 363 mile canal connected Albany and New York for the first time. • 2 -The canal boats pulled by mules carried people and supplies across New York State. • 3 -The canal made a way for goods to be transported cheaply and quickly.
Implied Main Idea What do you think the main idea is? “The Native Americans used the trees to build their houses. They hunted and trapped animals in the forest for food. They found roots and berries that they could eat. Some plants found in the forest were used for medicine. ”
Answer: • Native Americans used every resource they could find in nature in order to live.
Implied Main Idea “Maria offered to help her mother clean the house. She vacuumed the living room and dusted the furniture. She picked up the toys in the playroom. Then, she mopped the kitchen floor. ”
Answer: • Maria is a helpful daughter.
Review • Main Idea - is like the heart of the text or a paragraph, either stated or implied. • It is the controlling idea. • All the other supporting details in the text or within a paragraph should tell us more about the main idea.