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Nonfiction

An exploration of non-fiction texts and their features -- and the difference between scanning, skimming, and active reading -- designed for primary school children
by

Katie Day

on 8 May 2012

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Transcript of Nonfiction

Reading
Non-Fiction
Texts Metaphor #1 Metaphor #2 Attention! Credits Half apple via Muffet on Flickr
http://www.flickr.com/photos/calliope/59060621/sizes/m/

Whole apple via Muffet on Flickr
http://www.flickr.com/photos/calliope/59060629/sizes/m/in/set-1636821/

Aerial London view via Feuilllu on Flickr
http://www.flickr.com/photos/feuilllu/13320788/sizes/l/

Singapore MRT map
http://www.lta.gov.sg/projects/proj_maps_rail_l.htm

Singapore aerial view via williamcho on Flickr
http://www.flickr.com/photos/adforce1/4183927217/sizes/o/

Singapore Chinatown on foot via williamcho on Flickr
http://www.flickr.com/photos/adforce1/300924352/sizes/o/

Singapore road view via jaevus on Flickr
http://www.flickr.com/photos/jaevus/131365026/

Snake via spisharam-away on Flickr
http://www.flickr.com/photos/11510574@N02/3390095091/

Snake in camoflage via eastpole on Flickr
http://www.flickr.com/photos/eastpole/1375494895/

Why We See So Well book image via Amazon.com
http://www.amazon.com/Fruit-Tree-Serpent-Why-Well/dp/0674033019/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpt_1

Orchard Road sign
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Orchard_Road_street_sign_-_Singapore_(gabbe).jpg

Where's Waldo/Wally scene
http://whereswaldo.com/fankit/graphics/IntlManOfLiterature/

One-way sign
http://www.megasafety.com/Categories.aspx

Singapore CIA map
http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Singapore-CIA_WFB_Map.png

Singapore major roads
http://www.photos4travel.com/singapore/map-of-singapore.jpg

Numbers via DaveBleasdale on Flickr
http://www.flickr.com/photos/sidelong/3466698246/ Information, like seeds,
wants to be consumed and spread Non-fiction texts, like cities,
are designed to be navigated and explored. Scanning
is like an aerial view Skimming
is like driving around Active Reading
is like walking the streets Active reading involves thinking
about the text and its meaning. Thank snakes that we can read... Navigation! Fastest Slowest Images Malagasy
brain
venomous
insectivorous
anthropological
acuity
hard-wired
shrews
Madagascar
hypothesis 4869
1335
8342
8375
7861
6329
6391
9984
8749
6754 Numbers 2010 Find and circle one
instance of each of these
words in the article. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/09/03/opinion/03isbell.html?_r=1&pagewanted=all Find and circle one
instance of each of these
numbers on this sheet. http://bit.ly/fourdigitnumbers A table of contents is like a road map. An index is like a mass transit system. Three scanning games to try How fast can you find...?

Can you describe how your eyes and mind do it...? Words Created by Katie Day
http://twitter.com/librarianedge
April 2010 Buy and cut up multiple copies of a Where's Waldo/Wally book
Laminate the pages and use with a class In non-fiction, headings are like street signs. Article by Lynne A. Isbell
that explains the snake/eyesight
connection When reading non-fiction, information can be approached
from different directions... while fiction is read
like a one-way street,
from start to finish. Depending on your purpose,
you read non-fiction in different ways. Humor from
http://onion.com/9S8nMG Making text easier to consume... WASHINGTON—Unable to rest their eyes on a colorful photograph or boldface heading that could be easily skimmed and forgotten about, Americans collectively recoiled Monday when confronted with a solid block of uninterrupted text.

Dumbfounded citizens from Maine to California gazed helplessly at the frightening chunk of print, unsure of what to do next. Without an illustration, chart, or embedded YouTube video to ease them in, millions were frozen in place, terrified by the sight of one long, unbroken string of English words.

"Why won't it just tell me what it's about?" said Boston resident Charlyne Thomson, who was bombarded with the overwhelming mass of black text late Monday afternoon. "There are no bullet points, no highlighted parts. I've looked everywhere—there's nothing here but words."


...

"I'm sure if it's important enough, they'll let us know some other way," Detroit local Janet Landsman said. "After all, it can't be that serious. If there were anything worthwhile buried deep in that block of impenetrable English, it would at least have an accompanying photo of a celebrity or a large humorous title containing a pop culture reference."

Added Landsman, "Whatever it is, I'm pretty sure it doesn't even have a point." Nation Shudders At Large Block Of Uninterrupted Text

March 9, 2010 | ISSUE 46•10 The giant mass of prose was devoid of so much as a large pulled quote for readers to glance at before moving on. End of Part 1 Repeat!
Full transcript