Reading for Fact and Opinion
Essential aspect of reading comprehension at the higher levels is to encourage students to read texts with a critical eye. To do this they must be afforded ample opportunities to practice recognizing fact from opinion. this process begins with developing a clear understanding of the definitions of both terms, which though it may seem clear-cut the waters get a little mother when it is grilled I'm into.
information can be presented in a number of ways to the Midway that can be presented him can be termed fact or opinion. Fact refers to objective information that can be verified for example if someone says it is 20 degrees Celsius outside this is John with the use of a thermometer be easily verified or disproven through observation. however, the statement it is cold outside cannot turn neither be disproven or proven to to its objective nature. what's 20 degrees is likely to be comfortable for a great many people for some people it may experienced as cold. therefore it is neither true or untrue to say the 20 degrees is cold as it is a matter of opinion. is example of highlights clear-cut distinction between what constitutes fact And what can be classed as opinion.
Make sure that the book has both facts and opinions in it. This may be hard to find. You may choose to write a short story or essay instead to give your students practice with this skill. On the three sheets of paper, write the following: Fact, Opinion, and I’m not sure. Tape up the sheets in three corners of your classroom.
1. Explain the lesson.
Today we will do a three corner activity. I will read a book. When I get to a fact or opinion I will stop reading. You will decide if it is a fact or an opinion. You will go to that corner. If you don’t know, go to the corner that says I’m not sure.
2. Review how to choose which corner to go to.
Let’s do an example. Don’t walk anywhere yet, just think about where you would go. The sentence from the book is “I think all candy is delicious.” Where would you go? Why?
Call on students to answer.
That’s right. That sentence is an opinion. Some people might not like all kinds of candy.
When you get to your corner, explain what made you decide to go there.
3. Do the three-corner activity.
We are going to be reading the book __________ by __________.
I’m going to read the book. I will pause after certain sentences to give you time to decide if it is a fact or an opinion and go to your corner. Remember, when you are at your corner, each person should explain why they thought it was a fact or an opinion. If you are in the I don’t know corner, discuss with the other people there why you are not sure.
Read the book, pausing at facts and opinions. Allow students time to get to their corner and discuss the sentence.
Repeat the process throughout the book.
4. Make sure that each student understands why each statement was a fact or an opinion.
For Advanced Students:
Encourage these students to use some of the facts from the book to write a short piece with no opinions.
For Struggling Students:
Remind these students to think about whether or not someone could argue with the statement or have a different idea about it. If so, it is an opinion. If not, it is a fact.
For ELL Students:
These students may need help understanding the signs at the three corners. Make sure students understand the terminology and that they are not just going to corners based on what other students are doing.
Defining Fact and Opinion:
Students are taught that “a fact” is an “actuality” i.e. an existence of an object, occurrence of an event or information which is objective. Facts are those statements that are proved by the presence of evidence. On the other hand “an opinion” can be a general or individual view, belief or impression. These statements are identified by the presence of words such as, “feel, believe, think.”
Fact or Opinion activities:
These are a few simple, quick and easy to implement activities that will encourage the use of this strategy within the classroom.
Teaching the strategy:
Identify the statement: On the whiteboard draw two columns, one with sentences (around ten) and another for writing the word ‘fact’ or ‘opinion’. Students have to determine whether ‘fact’ or ‘opinion’ is written next to each sentence.
State a fact or an opinion: Make some chits with the words ‘fact’ or ‘opinion’ written on them. Ask each student to come up to the teacher’s table, pick a chit and make a statement according to the word on the chit.
True or false: A sentence is displayed as fact or an opinion. Call out students randomly, to determine whether the sentence is true or false with explanation.
Gathering evidence: Give a worksheet containing sentences related to a topic that was covered in class. Students are instructed to verify if the sentences are fact or opinions, by finding evidence from their textbooks. They should write down the evidence next to each statement. After completion, students are asked to compare their answers with their neighbor.
In between lectures:
Fact or opinion corners: Sign boards with the word ‘fact’ and ‘opinion’ are placed in two corners of the classroom. Students have to assemble in the middle. After reading out a sentence, they are instructed to stand in the appropriate corner based on their reasoning. Students who do not know the answer must continue standing in the middle. A student from each group can explain their thought of reasoning. This activity helps teachers clear any doubts and is also provides good feedback regarding the student’s comprehension of the topic.
Sit or stand: Students are instructed to stand up when a fact is stated and continue sitting when it is an opinion. It helps teachers to easily identify those students who have not understood the statement.
As a closure activity, you can prepare a text material, content from a newspaper or even an audio recording. Students are grouped together and asked to read or listen to the material and to categorize sentences as facts or opinions with explanations for each.
1. Read or display fact and opinion statements one at a time. Students hold up index cards with either “Fact” or “Opinion” on them to indicate which type of statement is being made. You could also use one card and write the words on each side.
2. Label one side of the room “Fact” and the other side “Opinion.” Students are each given an index card with either a fact or an opinion written on it. Students read their card and go to the correct corner. Students are then given time to share their cards and see if others agree. Some may need to switch sides. Redistribute the cards and play again.
3. This is a variation on the game above. Students write either a fact or an opinion on a piece of scrap paper. Then, they crumple them into balls and have a “snowball fight” for about 30 seconds (or as long as you can stand it). Kids each retrieve a snowball and then proceed as above to the appropriate part of the room.
4. Get an inexpensive supermarket ball (the ones in the cages) or a beach ball. Write “Fact” and “Opinion” all over it with permanent marker. Students stand and throw the ball to each other. When a student catches the ball, he or she looks at which word is under (or closest to) his or her right thumb and makes that type of a statement. Then, he or she throws the ball to someone else. You could make this an elimination game for incorrect answers.
5. Use individual white boards and play Fact and Opinion Scoot. Have students number their boards according to where they are sitting so that students can go from board to board in order. Next, have each student write either a fact or opinion on his or her board. Students number a piece of notebook paper to use as an answer sheet and scoot from desk to desk writing either “F” for fact or “O” for opinion. Check answers by having students who wrote each statement say what kind of a statement it is.
6. Write a statement on the board and ask students to vote on whether it is a fact or an opinion, and then have students explain their reasoning.
7. Have students write 10 facts and 10 opinions about whatever you happen to be reading or studying (for example: dinosaurs, electricity, the presidents, etc.)
8. Write facts and opinions on color-coded index cards (different color for each type of statement). Distribute them and have students walk around the room sharing what is on each other’s cards. Then, have students split into groups by the color of their cards and explain why they are in these two groups.
9. For individual practice or playing Scoot, you can use these Multiple Choice Fact and Opinion Task Cards.
If task cards aren’t your thing, then you can get the same fact and opinion Statements in this PowerPoint.
We're looking at ways to improve your reading comprehension by thinking more critically one of the things you should too is to see if the information is a fact or an opinion that's easy right well there's a great area there if someone says the Earth is flat or an opinion the answer hi welcome to snap language Omar Franco if I say it's 30 degrees Celsius outside you can verify the information all you need is a thermometer or well your smartphone the information is objective it's based on data and observation is there a hot now that's an opinion 30° C is a fact its objective information that I can verify but you may think 30° C is comfortable another person different opinion so facts are verifiable and objective you can check the information and tell if it's true or untrue opinions cannot be verified and their subjective it's true well these are separate issues in the passage a writer can cuz information as a fat even though it may be strong and accurate it's up to the reader to examine the information carefully judgment it's a fact that it's 30 degrees but different something's presented as a fact well these are separate issues in the passage a writer can present information as a fast even though it may be inaccurate or even out wrong it's up to you as a reader to examine the information carefully to make sure it's relevant and accurate let's look at this chart
But it's wrong so when information is presented as a fact it is verifiable and objective based on statistics data observations it could be right wrong or misleading it's up to you to verify the evidence for the information is presented as an opinion you cannot verify it an opinion may be based on facts but it's subjective it's based on feelings or judgments Sara Lee paintings for week when they're based only on a gas or your personal feeling or judgment the more factual information you base your opinions on the stronger they are and the more compelled you are too both facts and opinions are important parts of whatever you want but
State of higher education on the stronger they are just found a two-thirds of college seniors fail to high school grammar test this points to the poor state of higher education in the United States but see this is presented as a fact there was a study and this is what I found this this is problematic it's just an opinion
Recently, a New York State elementary test prep site has been generating some buzz regarding its use of the terms fact and opinion. Here is one of the test items that elementary students are to label as fact or opinion. Researchers believe the Pterosaurus flew as fast as 25 miles per hour. The test’s answer may surprise you.*
Read on to learn when to teach, what to teach, and how to teach fact and opinion. Some may quibble a bit with my scope and sequence of instruction, my definitions of key terms, or my language of instruction. But then everyone has his or her own opinion, and furthermore, don’t confuse me with the facts!
Birds and the Bees
Teaching fact and opinion should be a lot like teaching “the birds and the bees.” The content and process should be appropriate to the age level. We don’t need to give all the answers to the seven-year-old’s question: “Where do babies come from?” However, with all-due apologies to stork advocates, we do need to give accurate, albeit incomplete, responses as a foundation to layer-in additional knowledge at the appropriate times.
Importance and Relevance
Helping students understand and apply the differences between fact and opinion is crucial to analytical reading, writing, listening, and speaking. Distinguishing between fact from opinion is key to interpreting information intelligently. It is one of the few “macro” skills that is, indeed, interdisciplinary. It is also a skill that is refined from elementary school up through post doctoral study. Furthermore, it is a skill of life-long learning and daily use.
What Fact and Opinion is Not
One of the best ways to learn anything well is to learn what it is not. Teachers may cringe a bit over this section or perhaps get a bit defensive because they may have misinformed their students over the years. Don’t fret. Knowledge changes and students are flexible. We’ve all taught that Pluto was our ninth planet for years, until recently.
● Fact is not “something proven true.”
● Fact is not “something accepted as true by most people.”
● Fact is not “truth.”
● Opinion is not “what you like”
● Opinion is not “just what you believe”
● Opinion is not “It’s just your opinion” or “You have your opinion and I have mine”
Teaching Fact and Opinion: When, What (with Exemplars), and How
When? 3rd – 4th Grades
● Fact is something said or done in the past or present. Exemplars: “He painted the wall blue” or “He said, ‘That wall is an ugly shade of blue.'”
● Opinion is a belief. Exemplar: “Blue is a better color for this wall than green”
How? Memorize those definitions and exemplars. Identify and judge between fact and opinion from examples. Apply in both narrative and expository writing.
When? 5th – 6th Grades
● Fact can be used as evidence or can be supported by other evidence. Exemplars: “Walls can be painted in different colors. For example, one wall is blue” or “One wall is blue. This proves that walls can be painted in different colors.”
● By definition, facts cannot be wrong. False Exemplar: “He got his facts about the blue wall all wrong.” Explanation: We really mean that he did not state facts or that he misapplied the use of those facts.
● Opinion can be used as evidence or can be supported by other evidence. Exemplars: “Two boys in the class are color blind, so blue is a better color for this wall than green” or “Blue is a better color for this wall than green because the chairs in the classroom have blue backs.”
● Opinion is not a preference. Exemplar: “In my opinion, I like blue walls.” Explanation: Liking one color over another states a personal preference, not an opinion.
How? Memorize those definitions and exemplars. Identify and judge among fact, opinion, and preference from examples. Apply fact and opinion as both evidence and as evidentiary support in both narrative and expository writing.
When? 7th – 8th Grades
● Fact is something that could be verifiable in time and space. Exemplar: “The wall was painted blue in 2016.” The fact would certainly be verifiable if the school office files contained a similar shade of blue paint chip, attached to a dated 2016 receipt for blue paint and a painting contractor’s 2016 dated invoice marked ‘Paid in Full.’”
● Fact is not based upon consensus or tradition. False Exemplars: “”It’s an established fact that retired educators living in the town think that the walls of that classroom have always been blue” or “Historians assert and Americans have traditionally held that Pilgrims and Native Americans ate turkey at the first Thanksgiving.” Explanation: The conclusion of experts or a traditional belief, even over long periods of time, does not constitute a fact.
● Fact is not definition. False Exemplars: “It’s a fact that blue is a mix of green and yellow” or “2 +2 = 4 and If A = B and B = C, then A = C.” Definitions simply state that one thing synonymously shares the same essence or characteristics of another thing. Much of math deals with meaningful definitions, called tautologies, not facts, per se.
● Fact is not a scientific theory. False Exemplar: The universe began fifteen billion years ago withthe “Big Bang.” Explanation: “Facts and theories are different things, not rungs in a hierarchy of increasing certainty. Facts are the world’s data. Theories are structures of ideas that explain and interpret facts. Facts do not go away when scientists debate rival theories to explain them.” Stephen Jay Gould
● Opinion is a belief or inference (interpretation, judgment, conclusion, or generalization). Check out my Top Ten Inference Categories Exemplar: “Blue is a better color for the classroom walls than red, because blue is a more soothing color.”
● By definition, opinions are arguable, much like persuasive essay thesis statements. Exemplar: “Blue walls are more stylish than white walls.”
● Opinions can be categorized as valid or invalid based upon their evidentiary support. Exemplar: “In a survey of thirty building-design architects, 28 of 30 stated that blue walls were ‘more stylish’ than white walls.” False Exemplar: “I asked the owner of All-Blue Paint Company if blue or white walls were more stylish, and he said ‘blue.’” Explanation: The owner would certainly not be an unbiased source and the survey sample is too small to provide meaningful data.
How? Memorize those definitions and exemplars. Identify and judge among fact, opinion, preference, consensus, tradition, definition, and theories from examples. Indentify and judge between valid and invalid opinions. Identify whether facts are verifiable and whether opinions are arguable. Apply fact and opinion as both evidence and as evidentiary support in both narrative and expository writing.
When? 9th – 10th Grades
● Fact is an objective reflection of reality. A fact exists independent of our sensory experience. Exemplar: “If a classroom’s walls are blue, then someone must have painted them that color.”
● Fact can be misapplied and manipulated when used out of context or in combination with other irrelevant facts. False Exemplar: “He said, ‘The classroom walls need painting.’” “The teacher said, “Blue has always been my favorite color.” The contractor painted the her classroom walls blue. Explanation: There is no necessary connection between the three facts. Combining the three possibly unrelated facts leads one to infer that the teacher had input regarding the color selection of her classroom walls.
● Fact is not the same as truth. False Exemplar: “It’s a fact that the classroom walls are blue.” Explanation: This is known as a category error. We can state the fact that the walls were painted blue or the fact that someone said that they are blue, but this is not the same as truth. There is no process of falsification with facts, as there is with truth. For example, we could not say “It’s not a fact that the classroom walls are black.” Similarly, in a criminal court case, if a defendant pleads not-guilty to the charge that he or she murdered someone, the prosecution must falsify this plea and prove the truth of the guilty charge via evidence, such as facts, in order to convict the defendant.
● Opinions are subjective interpretations of reality. Exemplar: “Neon green walls would more likely keep students awake and attentive, rather than soothing blue walls.”
● Opinions can be manipulated and taken out of context. False Exemplar: “He said, ‘Blue walls seem more soothing than red ones.’” “He said, ‘That wall is an ugly shade of brown.'” “He will only be satisfied if we paint his classroom walls blue.” Explanation: Putting together two opinions that are not necessarily related can lead to an invalid inference.
How? Memorize those definitions and exemplars. Identify how facts are objective and opinions are subjective from examples. Indentify and judge how facts and opinions may be manipulated, misapplied, and taken out of context. Identify the difference between fact and truth with examples.
When? 11th – 12th Grades
● Fact is not a phenomenological representation of reality. False Exemplar: “The walls appear blue during the day, but have no color at night.” Explanation: Just because the blue color appears to disappear at night due to the absence of light, does not mean that this describes reality. To say that the sun rises in the east and sets in the west describes how things appear from our perspective, not what factually occurs.
● Fact is studied in the philosophical discipline of ontology. Exemplar: “Existence is proven by the act of thinking about existence—cogito ergo sum” “I think, therefore I am” Rene Descartes
● Fact is studied in the philosophical discipline of epistemology. Exemplar: “How can I know to what extent the “facts” of scientific observation have been influenced by my biases, the limits of my sensory experiences, and the act of observation in it of itself?”
● A fact is not a claim. False Exemplar: “Blue walls make my students perform better on standardized tests.” Explanation: This is a category error. A claim is an inference, more closely related to an opinion than a fact, yet still different. This claim suggests that there is a causal relationship between wall color and student test performance. Akin to a “green 3,” there is no necessary connection between the two concepts. A positive correlation may, indeed, be found; however, asserting such would still not be factual.
● Opinions that appear to differ need not be mutually exclusive. Exemplar: “Teacher A thinks blue walls are better than white walls because blue hides dust and marks while white does not. Teacher B totally disagrees with Teacher A’s rationale but believes that students would much prefer blue over white for their classroom.”
How? Memorize those definitions and exemplars. Identify the difference between factual and phenomenological representations of reality. Identify the relevant study of ontology and epist
The Fact or Opinion strategy teaches students to differentiate a fact from an opinion. This strategy is valuable to a student’s learning process as it facilitates evidence based learning and encourages them to be analytical in their reading and listening skills.