Teaching Question-Answer Relationships with Miss Rumphius

Mentor Texts help us model skills. This mentor text lesson will help your students with questioning skills using QAR.

Teaching students to think at a high level is the key to deep understandings. We want our students thinking, discussing, applying, connecting, and questioning with their reading experiences, and the best way for them to learn to do this is through a mentor text lesson where we as teachers model how it is done.

Question-Answer Relationship or QAR was developed by Tanny McGregor, and we use this analysis approach to help students connect the question type to the text evidence needed to accurately answer. This strategy is especially helpful with assessments, but what about in discussion? As we deepen understandings, we want our students justifying their thoughts with evidence. In discussions, we want kids matching what's asked to the relevant information needed to respond.


Teach Question-Answer Relationships or QAR using Miss Rumphius to help your students deepen their understanding.
To introduce this lesson, I walk through question types using this anchor chart. Using a simple, well know story such as The Three Little Pigs seems to help students get it.

To begin, we talk about who, what, where, when questions and the fact that they are recall questions and easy to answer. For Think and Search, we look at sequencing or lists or examples. Then, we tackle the most challenging, Author and Me. The vast majority of questions used on standardized tests fall into this category, so we spend most of our time talking about this type. Finally, we visit opinion questions (otherwise known as "On My Own").


Teach Question-Answer Relationships or QAR using Miss Rumphius to help your students deepen their understanding.
Once students have an understanding of how questions differ, you can begin practicing the QAR process with Miss Rumphius. I'd like to share this part of the set with you. I included two pages you can use for group discussion or partner work with Think, Pair, Share to help your kids analyze the questions. I advise you have your students debate a little on the analysis to get them really thinking about the questions and what's needed to answer them. To download, just click the image to the right.

Once your students have had practice, the last step is independent work. You can use the foldables shared to have students create questions by type for this book or a paired nonfiction book about LUPINES or other flowers. Did you catch that? LUPINES is my mystery word.

This book companion for Miss Rumphius features Question Answer Relationship, Story Elements, Vocabulary and Reading Response Options as well as Writing Extensions. Check out this post for more information
If you are interested in the full unit for Miss Rumphius, it is half price this week ($1.50) and includes before/during/after materials for the following skills:
Schema Builder on Making a Difference in the World
Vocabulary Words and Organizer
QAR Materials
Story Elements Flapbook
Four Square Thinking Organizer
Making a Difference in the World Class Book
19 pages total

Teach Question-Answer Relationships or QAR using Miss Rumphius to help your students deepen their understanding.
Mentor texts can be a huge help to students, but are much more than a read aloud of the past. We call them mentor texts because they are purposefully chosen to explain a skill. If you are interested in more information on using mentor text lessons, check out the other posts on my blog. 

Mentor Text Lessons


The Reading Crew also have a wonderful Pinterest board filled with past blog posts we've shared. Be sure to follow it so that you can see when new pins are added, or return to it when you need it. 


  1. Yet another AWESOME activity by Comprehension Connection. Thank you! Also, thank you so much for organizing this giveaway :)
    The Techie Teacher

  2. Thank you, Carla. I'm a firm believer in teaching high level thinking. It always leads to deeper understanding. And, as always...you are such a great organizer. I appreciate all that you do.

  3. Well, phooey! I accidentally entered Deb Hanson's mystery word in your Comprehension Connection slot! (I wondered why I needed to enter Deb's mystery word twice. Just goes to show that close reading is important--Comprehension Connection and Crafting Connection are NOT the same!) I can't edit my entry so I'm just coming here to say your mystery word is LUPINES, just in case you can help me get credit for an entry on your page! This is a great blog hop!

  4. Carla, this is yet again another incredible post. I have seen a lot of success with teaching QAR strategies to my students, and your resources will be so helpful! Thank you!

  5. I pinned the image from the Reading Crew FB page (and linked it to your blog) because the image that showed up when I selected "pin" from the rafflecopter link above was from the winter hop.

  6. I love this book and QAR is something I have been working really hard on with a small group of second graders. I think this will be helpful to so many students. Thank you so much.

    1. Thanks and I hope so! I am using it Monday with a group too!

  7. Another awesome post as usual! This is such a tricky topic to teach - I love your resources! Thank you for sharing!

  8. I love this Carla -- thank you for sharing it with us.

  9. Thank you for QAR resource and for the wonderful teaching ideas. I love Miss Rumphius and look forward to trying out this lesson!

    1. I am actually using the lesson in class on Thursday with fourth grade, so this will be fun. Thanks for commenting.


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