Good readers use text structure to assist in reading comprehension. Text structure refers to the way authors organize their ideas in narrative stories, information text, and poems (Tompkins, 2010). Narrative, information texts, and poems each have various predictable organizational features, vocabulary, and presentations that readers can anticipate. As such, text structures that become familiar and predictable to readers facilitate their comprehension and recall of information. Teachers therefore must explicitly teach students to recognize the predictable nature of story structures, expose children to a variety of literary genres, and show children how to distinguish among the various text structures authors use to organize their texts.
Visual representations in text. Readers use graphic features to assist in understanding text. Graphics such as story maps, flowcharts, Venn diagrams, or semantic maps visually display information that often summarizes a key text idea or re-represents information from the text. These visuals highlight important information from the text and aid readers in understanding and remembering it.