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Main Idea & Supporting Details Activities, Worksheets, and Graphic Organizers

Kim Miller
Grade Levels
3rd - 5th, Homeschool
Resource Type
Formats Included
  • PDF
  • Google Apps™
  • Activity
40 pages
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Kim Miller
Includes Google Apps™
The Teacher-Author indicated this resource includes assets from Google Workspace (e.g. docs, slides, etc.).
Easel Activity Included
This resource includes a ready-to-use interactive activity students can complete on any device. Easel by TpT is free to use! Learn more.

Also included in

  1. Do your students struggle to find the main idea and supporting details of a paragraph, passage, or story? This seasonal bundle of short reading passages with graphic organizers make it easy for students to pinpoint the main idea. Supporting details are strategically placed so that students can easil
    Save $5.65
  2. Do you love reading comprehension activities that have both a printable and digital version included? This 690+ page reading standards-based bundle includes 28 of my best-selling resources in printable and digital versions that you can easily use with your students in the classroom or through online
    Save $40.58


Are you having a hard time teaching your students how to find the main idea and supporting details of a passage? Many students struggle with this skill. They tend to get confused and caught up in all the little details. These reading passages with graphic organizers are perfect for students to use as they practice finding the main idea and supporting details. After years of trial and error, I have found that this solution works time and time again.

These PRINT & DIGITAL main idea practice activities include high-interest nonfiction reading passages that will spark the interest of students and encourage active participation and learning.

In this download, you will get:

  • 20 Printable Nonfiction Reading Passages with Graphic Organizers
  • Google Slides Digital Version
  • TpT Easel Activity Digital Version
  • Answer Keys

Engaging and Interesting Topics That Make Learning Fun!

  • The Wonders of Water
  • Preventing Cavities
  • The Mystery of the Honey Bee
  • Presidential Pets
  • Super Brain
  • Lost in Time
  • Carnivorous Plants
  • Bubbling Observations
  • Fishy Facts
  • Tourist Attractions
  • Germy Situations
  • Brothers in Flight
  • Pioneer Families
  • Survival Tools
  • Rattling Facts
  • Planet Earth
  • Rocks and Minerals
  • Tiny Parts
  • Test Taking Tips
  • George's Teeth

A scaffolded approach!

When teaching main idea and supporting details, it’s important to start small and basic. With this resource, you can provide your students with short, easy-to-read paragraphs with an obvious main idea and easy-to-find supporting details to choose from. This strategy helps students get in the habit of focusing on what the text is mostly about. It also allows students to pinpoint key ideas that support and help describe the main idea.

This resource is the first in a series of practice packs. This is also the easiest version with the main idea found in the first sentence. It is the perfect resource for beginners just starting to learn how to find the main idea and supporting details of a non-fiction reading passage.

You can use these main idea practice activities as:

  • individual printable worksheets
  • a printable practice packet
  • digital Google Slides assignments
  • a TpT Digital Activity

The digital version of this resource was created in Google Slides. Each reading passage comes with its own Google link so that you can digitally assign these activities individually to your students.

These activities are perfect for:

  • whole group instruction
  • morning work
  • small groups
  • independent desk work
  • assessments
  • early finishers
  • homework
  • sub plans, and so much more!

Suggestions for Use:

Depending on how much your students know about finding the main idea will depend on how you use these non-fiction reading passages. Third-grade students may need modeling of the activity before completing one on their own. Fourth-grade students should easily be able to find the main idea and supporting details after a brief introduction. Fifth-grade students could use these passages to review third and fourth-grade skills on finding the main idea and supporting details.

Teachers like you said…

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ My students loved using this resource! Main idea and supporting details is an area of growth for my students, so the extra remediation really helped! This can also be used in independent practice or small groups, which is what I used it for. Great resource especially for review of reading skills before an assessment! Thank you! – Charlene W.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ I used this resource to progress monitor IEP goals for my student's. This resource was easy for my students to figure out and use. I loved the variety in the texts. The texts were also the perfect length for my students and kept them engaged. We all learned something from each passage and they prompted some great conversations! – Kristan W.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ These passages are high-interest and not too long or wordy. They made for great independent and partner review! The ones I have not assigned will make for a great spiral review later on. Highly recommend! – Hannah C.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ This resource was amazing for my distance learners. It was so neat and organized with the passages on one side and the graphic organizer on the other. My students were able to highlight the main idea and key details using Kami and then write them out on the same worksheet in the bubbles. I would even use this in person too. It was perfect! – Lindsay L.

Extension Activity:

RI.4.2 asks students to not only determine the main idea and supporting details but to also summarize the text. Once students have completed the activity, you could have them use their web including the main idea and three supporting details to write a summary of the text.

Bundle and save for a discount!

Purchase the Main Idea and Supporting Details Year-Long Bundle to get this pack plus 4 more resources that build on the other. Each packet in the bundle gradually gets harder and scaffolded instruction of main idea takes place.

Supports Common Core Standards (CCSS):




Not sure if this resource is for you and your students? Try them for FREE! Download these FREE Main Idea and Supporting Details Passages and give them a try this week!

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Copyright © Kim Miller (A Love of Teaching)

Permission to copy for single classroom use only.

Please purchase additional licenses if you intend to share this product.

Total Pages
40 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Determine the main idea of a text; recount the key details and explain how they support the main idea.
Determine the main idea of a text and explain how it is supported by key details; summarize the text.
Determine two or more main ideas of a text and explain how they are supported by key details; summarize the text.


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