Annotating A Non-Fiction Text
Annotating A Non-Fiction Text
Annotating a text means that you talk with the text by
working through strategies to help to understand it
You make notes on the article and work through
unknown words and questions, as well as make
* Circle unfamiliar words (then define them)
* Acknowledge the confusion
* Talk with text
* Capture the main idea
* Highlight important details
* Speaker: Who is the voice in the text? Include any background information.
What points is the speaker making? Is there any bias?
* Occasion: What is the occasion for writing this piece? Include time & place.
What promoted the author to write this piece? Include any events, ideas,
* Audience: Who was this document created for? Is it aimed for one person, a
group of people, a particular race, social class, political party, etc? This can
come from any inferences in the text, the diction, the connation of chosen
words, and the traits of the Speaker.
* Purpose: What is the reason behind the text? What does the speaker
want the audience to think or do as a result of reading the piece? What
reaction is the author trying to get from the audience? Examine any
themes being presented.
* Subject: What is the general topic, content, and ideas contained in the
text? Go beyond the immediate occasion to discover the larger context
or issue that eventually led to the triggering Occasion.
* Tone: What is the attitude of the speaker/ author? How does the author
feel? What is the attitude the writer takes towards the subject or
character? Analyze diction, syntax, connation, and imagery to determine
the attitude being presented.
* Political Cartoon
* Speaker: Anti-isolationist political
cartoonist, Dr. Seuss.
* Occasion: the attacks on England by
* Audience: 1) other anti-isolationists
* Purpose: 1) support those who feel
America should enter war
2)shame isolationists for their
* Subject: World War II
* Tone: mocking, humorous, satirical
Purpose: What is the author’s argument/claim? What is the
focus? Is the author writing to entertain you? Inform you of
about something? Persuade you to action? Convince you to
feel to think or feel a certain way? Does he/she wish to
contrast ideas? Be specific, and point to concrete examples
(use evidence/quotes from the text).
Audience: Explain the author’s projected audience. Are they
friendly or hostile? Are they associated with a particular
interest group? Of a particular age? Gender? Social class?
Support your choices with examples and/or explanations.
Speaker: Describe who is speaking in the text. For
informational texts, the speaker is usually the author. For
nonfiction, the speaker is a character. Who is the speaker
here? What do you know about him/her? Use textual
evidence/quotes to support your claim.
Tone: What words does the author use to show the speaker’s
attitude? What tone does the author take towards the
subject? Toward the audience? How does the author deliver
Organization: What organization method does the author
use, and how does this organization enhance the
development of the author’s claim?
Rhetoric: How does the author construct his/her sentences?
How can you classify the author’s word choice? How do
these elements affect the author’s claim?
Imagery: What are the primary images in the text? What
about figurative language (metaphors, similes, repetition,
allusion, alliteration, personification, vivid descriptions)?
What ideas do they tend to represent? How do these images
enhance the author’s purpose and claim?
(Focus, Author, Title, text type)
In the ____________________, “__________________________” by
_____________________________, he/she ______________________
**Strong verbs: expresses, discusses, states, disputes, persuades,
suggests, advocates, challenges, focuses, supports, presents,
emphasizes, provides, argues, claims, attacks, reflects, comments,
describes, distinguishes, reveals, implies, refers, displays