The Best Text Structure Activities You Must Try!

Teaching nonfiction text structure is no picnic!  To be honest, I don’t even remember learning it when I was in school, let alone in college.  However, it has quickly become one of the most important concepts to teach when covering nonfiction.  Research shows that identifying and understanding text structure helps lead to mastery of other important standards as well such as main idea and summarizing.  So how do we teach this important skill while still keeping our students engaged?  I’ve got you covered!  Check out these amazing text structure activities that I just know your students will love!

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Text Structure Games

text structure game photo Playing games is a great way to make something hard into something fun!  But how do you do that with text structure?  One of my favorite text structure games is my Secret Sentence Sorting Game!  Here, students sort cards based on which text structure is being shown.  Once all of the cards have been sorted, the students then analyze each group of cards.  On each card is a word and when put together with the rest of the cards from that pile will create a sentence.  Can they find the secret sentence?  This is truly one of my favorite text structure activities and I just know your students will love it too!

It is currently a part of my full, text structure unit, which has 5 days of whole group and small group lesson plans, exit tickets, an assessment, a game, and more!  Make sure to check out the Text Structure Unit if you’re interested!

Another fun text structure game is my text structure Swipe game!  This game is a spin-off of the popular ‘Memory’ game. text structure spin game picture Students lay out the cards face down in a grid format.  Then one player spins the spinner.  All students grab a card and read it.  If it matches the text structure of the spinner, they get to keep the card.  If not, they must put it back where it was.  But remember, if the spinner lands on that text structure – will they know where the card is?  The player with the most cards wins!

This is a fun and competitive group game that your students will be asking to play over and over again.  Make sure to grab it to help complete your collection of text structure activities!

Text Structure Interventions

text structure interventions photo I have found that having a lot of ideas and ways to teach text structure in my back pocket is always a good thing.  It takes students a while to catch on.  One of the best ways to help struggling students with through some text structure interventions!

These interventions are designed to be simple, quick, and effective – giving students steps to follow to master the skill.  Each of the interventions follows the same format that includes a short guided lesson, a teacher modeling page, and a student practice page.  Even better, each of the interventions focuses on a different and unique way to teach the skill.  These are great to have on hand when needed!

Text Structure Crafts

Oh, crafts…  They always sound so fun and exciting when planning but can turn out to be a hot mess in production.  But photo of text structure taco craft nonetheless, students enjoy them and they are a great way to practice fine motor skills, art, and reading at the same time.

My Text Structure Taco craft is probably my most popular.  I mean, who doesn’t love tacos!?  Students get to cut, color, and create a nonfiction text structure taco.  On each ingredient in the taco, a short paragraph can be found. Students can read them and determine the text structure of each piece.  Finally, they can assemble them into a taco and staple!  These make super cute bulletin board displays!

text structure building blocks craft photo My other text structure craft is my building blocks activity.  The building blocks in this activity are supposed to represent how text structures help to build the paragraph and story.  In this craft, students get to read 6 short paragraphs and identify the text structure of each.  Then students assemble the blocks on top to create a flip-open craft display.  These always turn out super cute!

Text Structure Mini-Lessons

Text structure is definitely a skill that needs to be taught multiple times.  That’s where text structure activities such as mini-lessons are very handy!  Mini-lessons are great because they are quick, get to the punch, and are highly effective. You can do text structure mini lesson papers photo them whole group or in small groups too!  One of my favorite mini-lessons is where students sort through cards and place them on a mat.  Each text structure has 3 cards – one with an example, one with the purpose, and one with the characteristics.

I’ve put together 5 engaging mini-lessons to share with you in case you need some too!  They cover topics such as building paragraphs like writers, using graphic organizers to help identify text structures, and finding evidence to support text structures.  Make sure to check them out!

Text Structure Task Cards

task card photo One of the easiest text structure activities you could throw together for review – is task cards!  They are easy to prep and students love them!  I just knew I had to make them for my students!   The unique thing about my task cards is that students don’t have to complete them all.  They are self-differentiating which means students advance through them faster or slower depending on their correct and incorrect answers!

This helps students who don’t need as much review get finished quicker and move on to something else where as students who do need the practice get the extra help.  Also, teachers don’t have to grade these task cards!  Since they are self-differentiating, they are self-checking.  Teachers simply look at the recording sheets to identify where in the concept students have trouble.

I also have digital ones too!

Text Structure Passages

The most tried and true way to practice a reading skill is through repetition of reading.  But sometimes finding engaging stories that were MADE to support a specific skill or photo of text structure passages standard can be hard.  And when you do find them they are either too short or too long.  I want a just right-sized passage that doesn’t take us all day to read and a quick check of understanding through comprehension questions or graphic organizers.

Yup – these are amazing!  Both print and digital, my students loved these passages because they were rigorous but at the right amount.  No stress, just focus on the text and the skill and we were able to move on!

I have these as print and digital too!  They make great homework or reading warm-ups!


I hope you found some amazing new text structure activities to try in your classroom!  If you want to save this post, make sure to pin the image below!  If you need some ideas for picture books to help you teach text structure, check out my suggestions!


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I’m a wife, a mommy of 3, blogger, and a full time teacher author and presenter. I love to read, shop, and spend time with my family! My hands are always busy, but my heart is so full!

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