Nonfiction Genre

Contributor: Alison Weiss. Lesson ID: 10823

Look at a newspaper. What is the difference between the news and the comics? News is nonfiction because it is not made up. Watch videos and work on fun online projects to learn the nonfiction genres!


Comprehension, Literary Studies

learning style
Kinesthetic, Visual
personality style
Lion, Beaver
Grade Level
Primary (K-2)
Lesson Type
Skill Sharpener

Lesson Plan - Get It!


Do you ever read the newspaper? Do you read the news or the sports section? Both fit into the same type of genre or type of literature. Do you know which?

Newspapers are mostly comprised — or made up — of nonfiction articles about current events.

The cartoon section is not, however, nonfiction. Nonfiction literature can be separated into sub-genres or categories, just like fiction. Being able to determine a piece of literature's genre may help you notice patterns common with that genre, and could also help you better comprehend what you read.

Before going on, if you missed or would like to review the Related Lesson about fiction in our Genre series, you can find it in the right-hand sidebar.

Watch this video, called Sparkley Barkley's Fiction Vs. Non-Fiction, to see the difference between fiction and nonfiction texts:


Here are the most popular non-fiction genres along with a few examples!

Expository Essay

An expository essay presents information about a theme, or big idea. The author is an expert or has done a lot of research. Here is an example of an expository paragraph, called If I Were President (Thoughtful Learning).


A biography tells the true story of another person's life. Biographies are often written in 3rd person. Listen to this biography story called A Picture Book of Martin Luther King Jr:



An autobiography tells the true story of the author's life. Autobiographies are usually written in 1st person.

News Article / Story

A news story gives important information about a recent event.

Informational Text

An informational text gives information on a specific topic, or gives instructions on how to do something.

Watch the Nonfiction Genres Powerpoint 2012 video below to see some examples of the nonfiction genres above:


Continue on to the Got It? section to practice online and on paper!

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