Main Idea and Details Anchor Chart – Peas in a Pod Lessons

Are you looking for a fun and engaging way to teach your students about finding the main idea and supporting details in a text? Look no further. In this post, we present an awesome main idea and details anchor chart, as well as reading comprehension passages that will make your lesson a hit!

As a teacher, you know that teaching students to identify the main idea is a crucial reading skill. It requires them to not only identify the topic but also understand the author’s message about the topic. Some students may find it easy, while others may struggle. But don’t worry, we have some great tips to help you out! Get ready for an adventure into the wonderful world of reading!


Teaching students to find the main idea and details requires them to identify the topic, and then what the author’s message is about the topic.  Sometimes the main idea is right there for students in the topic sentence, and other times it needs to be inferred, or pieced together, from multiple sentences.  

Asking the following questions is a great way to start:

  • Give a one sentence summary of what the text is about.  
  • What is this text mostly about?
  • What is the author’s message about the topic?
  • What is another title that could be given to this text/section?


Graphic organizers are perfect for supporting visual learners and breaking down challenging skills into more manageable pieces for students. You can give them to students as an personal anchor chart for their notebook or post them for on your classroom walls. Start by introducing main idea and supporting details using an anchor chart with a fun visual, like a heart, legs supporting a table, branches on a tree, or an umbrella with raindrops. These visuals drive home the point that the main idea needs to be supported by key details.

As your students start to grasp the concept, gradually move on to reading passages and then longer books with multiple paragraphs and sections. Keep in mind that longer texts usually have multiple main ideas, so it’s crucial to teach students how to identify them in smaller passages first.


Finding the main idea and supporting details has never been easier! Using our main idea graphic organizer to color code nonfiction passages gives students multiple opportunities to practice recognizing text organization. When students can see the organization of a written paragraph, they can more easily identify the main idea. Each reading passage also comes with comprehension passages, and answer keys are included. I’ve created several resources that allow my students to practice finding the main idea and details. Click on the pictures below to check them out!


You might also like “5 Quick Tips – Getting Students to Follow Directions.

Happy Teaching!

~ Melissa

I hope you find these suggestions helpful! Click here to follow Peas in a Pod on Tpt for more classroom tips & freebies.

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