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Flashcards / main idea

main idea

main idea


School: University of Maine at Machias
Tags: University of Maine at Machias
Cost: 25
Name: main idea
Uploaded: 04/10/2016
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is the title of a book or song. it is a word name or phrase that labels the subject but doesn't not reveal the specific contents of the passage. 2 to 5 words tell what the reading is about.

main idea

it is a sentence with thoughts and details into a general.

6 forms to say the main idea

main point, gist, thesis,central thought, central focus, controlling idea.

distinguishing topics, main ideas and details: a closer look.

topic: broad subject, the main idea: makes a point about the topic...TOPIC, MAIN IDEA, MAJOR DETAILS, MINOR DETAILS.

strategies for finding the main idea

informed and uninformed

"Informed" experts readers

strategy 1: the informed experts readers skimmed the passage before reading and took a guess at the main idea.

"uninformed" experts readers

Strategy a statement. Strategy:uninformed experts read the material and reviewed it to find key terms and concepts. they tried to bring the key terms and concepts together into a main idea statement. Strategy : still other uninformed experts read the material and then proposed a main idea statement. they double checked the passage to clarify or revise the main idea statement

reader tips to find the main idea .3 TECHNIQUE QUESTION

1) determine the topic: who or what is this reading about? 2)identify details: what are the major supporting details?3)find the main idea: what is the message the author is trying to convey about the topic?

the topic sentence

when the main idea is stated in a sentence, the statement is called a TOPIC SENTENCE or THESIS STATEMENT


researches shows the students find passages easier to comprehend when the main idea is directly stated within the passage.

where are stated main ideas located?

main idea statements can be positioned at the beginning, in the middle, or at the end of a paragraph. Both the beginning and concluding sentences of a passage can be combined to form a main idea statements.

major details

tend to support, explain and describe main ideas, they are essential

minor details

by contrast, tend to support, explain and describe the major details

key words :tips to find the major details:

one, first, another, furthermore, also, finally

key words: tips to find minor details:

for example, to be specific, that is, this means.

unstated main ideas

unfortunately, even if details are obvious, you can not always depend on the author to provide a direct statement of a main idea. to add drama or suspense to a description or narrative, the main idea may be hinted at or implied rather than directly stated.

unstated main idea in paragraphs

determining the main idea of a paragraph will be easier if you use three-step questioning. ask what is this about? " what do all most of the key terms or major details suggest?

tips getting the main idea of longer selections

1)think about the title, 2) read the first paragraphs or two to find a statement of the topic or thesis, 3) read the subheadings, 4)look for clues that indicate how the material is organized, 5) as you read organize the paragraphs into subsections, 6) determine how the overall organization and subsections relate to the whole


is a series of brief, concise statements in your own words of the main idea and the significant supporting details

what is the difference between topic and main idea?

the topic of a passage is the general term that forms an umbrella for the specific ideas presented, whereas the main idea is the message the author is trying to convey the topic

what are the strategies for finding stated and unstated main ideas?

in some passage the main idea is stated in a sentence and others it is unstated. for both, ask "who or what is this about? then look for the key supporting details that seem to suggest a common message. finally focus on the message of the topic by asking " what is the main idea the author is trying to convey about the topic?"