Winter Activities for Main Idea and Supporting Details


These engaging main idea activities include short winter-themed reading passages with graphic organizers for teaching main idea and supporting details.

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Finding main idea activities that also teach students how to find supporting details isn’t easy. Many students struggle to not only find main idea, but to pinpoint supporting details too.  They get confused and caught up in the little details when reading the text. The main idea activities within this resource have short winter-themed reading passages with graphic organizers, making it easy for students to pinpoint the main idea. Supporting details are strategically placed so students can easily practice identifying small details supporting the main idea. With repeated practice, your students will eventually be able to explain how the details of the passage support the main idea.

These PRINT & DIGITAL winter main idea activities include high-interest nonfiction reading passages that will spark the interest of students and encourage active participation and learning. The main idea in these passages can be found in the first sentence, second sentence, third sentence, or last sentence of the paragraph.


What’s Included:

  • 20 Winter-Themed Printable Nonfiction Reading Passages with Graphic Organizers
  • Google Slides Digital Version
  • Teacher Answer Keys


Winter Topics to Spark Interest:

  • Polar Bears
  • Snowflakes
  • Candy Canes
  • Daylight Saving Time
  • Emperor Penguins
  • Woolly Worm Predictors
  • Flying South
  • Coldest Place on Earth
  • Nap Time
  • Frostbite
  • Warm Tummy
  • Stuck to a Flagpole
  • Static Electricity
  • Salty Roads
  • Reindeer
  • Snow Days
  • Goose Bumps
  • Good Germs
  • Shivering Bees
  • Chapped Lips


Main Idea Activities with A Scaffolded Approach

When teaching main idea and supporting details, it’s important to start small and basic. With this resource, you can provide your students with short, easy-to-read paragraphs with an obvious main idea and easy-to-find supporting details to choose from. This strategy helps students get in the habit of focusing on what the text is mostly about. It also allows students to pinpoint key ideas that support and help describe the main idea.


This resource is the second in a series of practice packs. The main idea may be found in the first sentence, second sentence, third sentence, or last sentence of the paragraph. If you’re looking for an easier version with the main idea in the first sentence, you may want to check out Main Idea and Supporting Details Activities. It is the perfect resource for beginners just starting to learn how to find the main idea and supporting details of a non-fiction reading passage.


Activity Options:

  • individual printable worksheets
  • a printable practice packet
  • digital Google Slides assignments


⭐ The digital version of this resource was created in Google Slides. Each reading passage comes with its own Google link so you can digitally assign these activities to your students.


Ways to Use this Resource:

  • whole group instruction
  • morning work
  • small groups
  • independent desk work
  • assessments
  • early finishers
  • homework
  • sub plans, and so much more!


Suggestions for Use:

Depending on how much your students know about finding the main idea will depend on how you use these non-fiction reading passages. Third-grade students may need modeling of the main idea activities before completing one on their own. Fourth-grade students should easily be able to find the main idea and supporting details after a brief introduction. Fifth-grade students could use these passages to review third and fourth-grade skills in finding the main idea and supporting details.


Teachers like you said…

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ This provided LOTS of practice for this skill, in fact, more than I could use during the unit! But that means I can use others for periodic review. I liked that the main idea was not always the first sentence. Highly recommend! – Kathie G.


⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ This was an incredibly thorough and valuable resource. I have 7 full-time distance learners and 13 in-person students. Their reading levels range from mid 2nd grade to 5th grade. I was able to use paper copies and the digital version to differentiate for all of my learners. I used some slides for hybrid instruction and some as assignments. THANK YOU. I loved how engaging the passages were, and I appreciated your organized table of contents. – Jan G.


⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Main idea can be such a challenging skill for some students. This is such a great resource for main idea practice, and I like how we can work on practicing main idea all year with the seasonal passages. My students really enjoy them. I love that this product is digital- just assign on Google classroom, and my students are set! – Brandy V.


⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Great activity for my students to use for practice finding the main idea and supporting details! The passages are short which keeps them from overwhelming my struggling students. I love the fact that I can use the passages in a print or digital format. Thanks! – Karen G.


Extension of Main Idea Activities:

RI.4.2 asks students to determine the main idea and supporting details and summarize the text. Once students have completed the activity, you could have them use their web, including the main idea and three supporting details to write a summary of the text.


Bundle and save for a discount!

Purchase the Main Idea and Supporting Details Bundle to get this pack, plus 4 more resources that build on the other. Each packet in the bundle gradually gets harder, and scaffolded instruction of main idea takes place.


Supports Common Core Standards (CCSS):





Not sure if this resource is for you and your students?

Try them for FREE! Download these FREE Winter Main Idea and Supporting Details Passages and give them a try this week!

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