Compare and Contrast Organizers

The graphic organizers in this section help students determine the main idea/central idea and supporting details of the text they are reading or the information they are learning.

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Use these graphic organizers in combination with the Main Idea and Details Signal Words:

mostly about | another title | most important | most likely | best describes | sums it up | lesson learned | message in the text

Have students create a drawing, simple definition, example sentence or question as a memory device for recalling the signal words.

Teach students the purpose of the Main Idea and Details graphic organizer. Anytime you are introducing a new graphic organizer or reintroducing one after not using it for a long time, model how it is used before requiring students to use the organizer independently. When modeling, use familiar content so students can focus on learning how to use the organizer.

As students are first learning to identify Main Idea and Details, provide the main idea to students and then have them determine the supporting details of the main idea.

Have students use their completed graphic organizers to:

  • Write summaries
  • Write paragraphs and essays
  • Prepare for a group discussion
  • Retell a story using details
  • Make connections to other reading passages or real life situations
  • Present information
  • Ask and answer questions about information from a text or oral presentation
  • Review for a test

Higher Order Thinking Suggestions

Students apply Higher Order Thinking when they use completed graphic organizers to:

  • Reach conclusions
  • Compare and contrast information from different texts on the same topic
  • Justify how the details support the main idea
  • Evaluate the quality of evidence the author provides to support main ideas
  • Reach consensus on the most important main idea

Scaffolding Suggestions

Some students may need additional support when first using a graphic organizer. Scaffolding ideas you can use include:

  • Additional practice completing the organizer with familiar or less complex information.
  • Provide the organizer with some of the details already added as a model.
  • Allow students to complete the organizer using sketches or drawings.

2 Block Overlap

2 Concept Compare and Contrast with Summary

2 Concept Compare and Contrast with Patterns

Alike/Different Organizer

Analogy Cipher Organizer

Central Idea Compare and Contrast Organizer

Compare and Contrast Cube

Compare and Contrast Matrix

Compare and Contrast Organizer

Focused Compare and Contrast Organizer

Great 8 Signal Words – Compare and Contrast

Matrix Compare and Contrast

Primary Venn Diagram

Story Matrix

Summarizing T-Chart

Text Comparison Matrix

Venn Diagram

Yesterday/Today T-Chart

Yesterday/Today/Tomorrow Comparison Chart

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