FINDING THE MAIN IDEA AND SUPPORTING DETAILS WHAT IS THE MAIN IDEA? The main point that is being stated in a paragraph, story, essay, or other article. It is usually a general statement about what you are reading. The main idea also answers the following the question below: What is the authors most important point
about the topic? The main idea would be what the author says about the topic, in a complete sentence. Title Cheetah Run Topic Main Idea Cheetahs Cheetahs can run fast
Harry Potter is sent to school for wizards A boy with special where he meets Harry Potter and the skills enters a school loyal friends who Sorcerers Stone for wizards. help him fight evil enemies along the way. Titanic A love story that involve two people
on a ship The film describes the story of jack and Rose, two lovers from radically different circumstances, who fall in love during the maiden voyage of the ship titanic and who tragically sink with the ship. CHARACTERISTICS OF THE MAIN IDEA
Must always contain the topic (the word, name, or phrase that tells who or what the paragraph is about) Must always make complete sense by itself (even if you couldnt read the rest of the paragraph) Must be a general statement that sums up the details in the paragraph The main idea is never a question. It tells the reader what the text is about HOW DO WE FIND THE MAIN IDEA? WHERE CAN YOU
FIND IT? The main idea can appear ANYWHERE in a paragraph: Most often it appears at the beginning. The next most likely location is at the end. The third possibility is somewhere else within the paragraph. **Regardless of where it appears, it will have supporting details that explain more about it, give examples of it, or
PRACTICE Not only is smoking cigarettes a disgusting smelly habit, its also extremely bad for your health. It has been proven to cause cancer, lung disease, and heart disease, and to weaken your immune system. Smoking makes it a lot harder to breathe, which means its more difficult to play sports and get the exercise you need to stay healthy. It is also harmful for those hanging around a smoker, because they breathe the smoky air. Even though most people are aware of how bad smoking is for them, more than 1,000 people die each day from its effects! TOPIC
Smoking cigarettes MAIN IDEA Smoking cigarettes is bad for your health. DETAILS Smoking can cause cancer, lung disease, and heart disease weaken your immune
system make it a lot harder to breathe WHAT ARE SUPPORTING DETAILS? Supporting details are what the author uses to support the main idea. Details explain, illustrate, and elaborate upon the main idea. Details are specific pieces of information.
FIND THE SUPPORTING DETAILS There is some evidence that colors affect you physiologically*. For example, when subjects are exposed to red light respiratory** movements increase; exposure to blue decreases respiratory movements. Similarly, eye blinks increase in frequency when eyes are exposed to red light and decrease when exposed to blue. This seems consistent with intuitive*** feelings about blue being more soothing and red being more arousing. After changing a schools walls from orange and white to blue, the blood pressure of the students decreased while their academic
performance improved. (DeVito, qtd. in McWhorter 136) *The way in which a living organism or body part functions. **The breathing process. ***Natural TOPIC MAIN IDEA DETAILS Colors Colors affect you physiologically.
When subjects are exposed to red light, respiratory movements increase Exposure to blue decreases respiratory movements Eye blinks increase when eyes are exposed to red light and
decrease when exposed to blue. POP QUIZ! QUESTION 1 Select two terms that best describe the main idea of a piece of writing. A) A supporting detail B) A statement of opinion C) A general statement D) The thesis statement
QUESTION 2 In an essay, details serve a similar function to: A) An instruction manual for putting together furniture B) The characters in a work of fiction C) Blank pages in a notebook D) The evidence an attorney uses to convict a criminal QUESTION 3 What do you get when you cross a robot and an astronaut? A Robonaut! Robonauts are robot
helpers designed to work side-by-side with astronauts. Work on the first Robonaut began in 1997, and by 2002 Robonaut B was revealed to the public. Robonaut B may have featured interchangeable lower bodies, like four-wheel mode or hydraulic legs, but scientists and engineers continued to improve Robonaut. In February of 2010, Robonaut 2 was released to the public. Robonaut 2 moved four times faster than the first Robonaut. An advanced version of Robonaut 2 was finally tested in outer space in 2011. Robonaut functioned exactly as designed. QUESTION 3 Using the passage above, select one sentence that
supports the idea that Robonauts have improved over the years? A) What do you get when you cross a robot and an astronaut? B) Robonaut 2 moved four times faster than the first Robonaut. C) Robonauts are robot helpers designed to work side-by-side with astronauts. D) Robonaut B may have featured interchangeable lower bodies https:// www.saddleback.edu/uploads/la/rl/powerpoints/Main%2 0Idea.pdf
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