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Author’s Purpose

Introduce and practice author’s purpose in your reading workshop with these slides and printable worksheets.

Help children understand author’s purpose with this collection for your reader’s workshop.

This set will help you teach and provide practice for your students.

This is another free resource for teachers and homeschool families from The Curriculum Corner.

Introduce and practice author's purpose in your reading workshop with these slides and printable worksheets.

Author’s Purpose Definition

New to reading workshop and wondering to yourself: What is author’s purpose? Start here!

This is the reason the author is writing. It is why the author is writing what they are writing or their intent.

Understanding this idea can help students in both reading and in their writing.

In the past teachers have focused on three intents for writing: persuade, inform and entertain. The beginning letters of these words can be put together to form the word PIE as a reminder for students.

Recently, this list has been expanded. Now the list includes persuade, inform, entertain, explain and describe. This is a more complete list.

Author's Purpose Worksheets and Activities

Here is a quick explanation of each:

Persuade – the author is writing o convince you of something. They might want you to believe what they believe or are working to make you try a new product.

Examples: ads, reviews, speeches, billboards

Inform – the author is giving the reader information about a topic. They are helping the reading learn more.

Examples: biographies, informational text, documentaries, newspaper articles

Entertain – the author is entertaining the reader. They are telling a story that the reader will enjoy.

Examples: literature, poetry, comic books, joke books

Explain – The author is telling how something works. They might be explaining steps in a process or sharing how to do something.

Examples: directions, how-to books, recipes

Describe – The author is using the senses to tell about a topic. They want to use words that will help you visualize what they are telling about.

Examples: travel brochure, an essay using the senses to tell about your favorite restaurant, product descriptions

Identifying Author’s Purpose

As students begin working on this subject, it is helpful to talk the idea through as a class. You might share books and then have students work together to determine the purpose.

It is important for students to understand that author’s might have more than one intent when writing.

For example, a restaurant review might be written to describe the food and restaurant. It might also be used to persuade a diner to try or avoid a restaurant.

Talking through this idea when discussing different books can help students see how it can be ok to have more than one answer.

Slides for the Classroom

The first download below contains slides.

You can use these to use as a teaching tool on your SmartBoard. Or, you might choose to print the options that would benefit your students as anchor charts.

This set of slides can also help those of you who will be teaching this in a virtual setting.

The slides can be used to help guide your discussion.

Included are descriptions of each purpose along with examples.

Next, there are individual slides that contain text examples. As a class you can discuss the purpose of each. This is a good place to emphasize that an author might have more than one purpose.

The final slide is one that might make a good printed anchor chart if you need one.

Author’s Purpose Worksheets

The second download includes graphic organizers and worksheets to continue practice.

Exploring Author’s Purpose Chart – students can complete the chart with a definition of each and examples.

Sketch Notes – there are two options, one contains picture clues, the other does not. Students can take notes on these pages in a way that is a little more creative.

Cut & Paste Author’s Purpose Worksheet – cut apart the text descriptions and paste under the correct purpose

Identifying Author’s Purpose – give students a stack of books or other texts. They will sort and record the titles.

Graphic Organizer – students will choose one text to focus on while practicing the skill

Exit Tickets – these can be a quick check for your students

You can download these free reading workshop materials here:

Teaching & Practice Slides


As with all of our resources, The Curriculum Corner creates these for free classroom use. Our products may not be sold. You may print and copy for your personal classroom use. These are also great for home school families!

You may not modify and resell in any form. Please let us know if you have any questions.