Lesson Plan

Comparing Nonfiction Text Features

Not all nonfiction texts on the same topic are created equal! Using this lesson plan, your class will become familiar with nonfiction features by comparing and contrasting texts on a shared topic.
Download lesson plan
Need extra help for EL students? Try the Text Features Evaluation pre-lesson.
View aligned standards
Need extra help for EL students? Try the Text Features Evaluation pre-lesson.

Learning Objectives

Students will be able to compare and contrast two nonfiction references on the same topic by reviewing their text features.

The adjustment to the whole group lesson is a modification to differentiate for children who are English learners.
EL adjustments


(5 minutes)
Nonfiction Text Features Checklist
  • Hand index cards to each student and pair them as A and B partners.
  • Assign the A partners to draw a pen and B partners to draw a pencil.
  • Collect all the cards and redistribute them. Have your students compare and contrast features of the items and share their thoughts with an elbow partner.
  • Call on students to share what they said or heard to the whole class.
  • Explain that although the items are of the same type, they have different designs and may be better suited for different uses. Likewise, today's lesson compares nonfiction books on the same topic, by their text features. Nonfiction text features are distinctive traits commonly found in nonfiction texts.


  • Provide visual vocabulary cards of different text features for a visual representation of the Nonfiction Text Features Checklist worksheet.
  • Allow ELs to use their home language (L1) or their new language (L2) to restate the definition of text features.


  • Use a real-life pen and pencil and ask ELs to share the similarities and differences between the pencil and pen aloud. Pay attention to their language to gather background knowledge on their use of academic vocabulary.