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Reports Topic Guide

A non-chronological report is a non-fiction text which is not organised into time order. They usually deal with one topic, using sub-headings to split the text up into ideas. For example, a non-chronological text about otters could include sections on their diet, habitat and life cycle, each with its own sub-heading.

These reports often include pictures and diagrams to illustrate and explain the topic.

Teach your children about non-chronological reports using our handy topic guide!

Choose a section:
Teaching Ideas | Resources | Facts | Videos | Books | Links

Teaching Ideas

  • This Powerpoint presentation gives an overview of report structure and features, perfect for starting your report writing unit.
  • Give children an example of a non-chronological report and ask them to find and highlight the different features.
  • Ask the children to make a list of questions that their audience might like answered about the topic, and check that they are all answered in their report.
  • Give the children some muddled up sentences about a topic, and ask them to organise them into paragraphs.
  • Help your children to format bullet points correctly with this BBC Bitesize guide and activity.
  • Ask children to create their non-chronological report in presentation software, such as Powerpoint.
  • Ask your class to write a school guide, using this template.
  • Create a report about an animal, this activity about foxes could be adapted to suit your topic.
  • Use this BBC Teach video and accompanying teaching ideas to support children in planning and organising their reports.
  • Show children an informative video related to your current topic, and ask them to present the key information in a non-chronological report.
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Resources

  • Our Report Writing Pack is full of useful resources, including checklists, examples and a comprehensive guide.

The Report Writing Pack

Non-Chronological Report Facts

  • “Non-chronological” means “not in time order”.
  • If a bullet point is a complete sentence, it needs a full stop, question mark or exclamation mark at the end. If it is just a word or phrase, it does not.
  • Each new bullet point goes on a new line.
  • Non-chronological reports are usually, but not always, written in the present tense.
  • A glossary is a useful addition to a non-chronological report, to explain technical vocabulary.

Videos

Features of non-chronological reports

In this short video, a teacher runs through a non-chronological report about non-chronological reports, focusing on the features.

Running time: 3:51

Animal Fact Files

This is the first of a series of three useful videos that give plenty of information for children to produce non-chronological reports about sharks, foxes, elephants and penguins. The other two look at appearance and habitat.

Running time: 1:45

Literacy – What are Subheadings?

This lesson models how to organise topics into subheadings, with tasks for the children to complete.

Running time: 8:15

Non-chronological report on woolly mammoths

This is a lovely example of using actions to help younger children learn the structure and features of a non-chronological report.

Running time: 3:26

Books

Dragonology

This beautiful book is a popular stimulus for non-chronological report writing.

Dinosaur Encyclopedia

This book (like most titles from Dorling Kindersley) is a great example of how to present information.

Going Fast

A levelled non-chronological report for younger readers.

Are you teaching your children about other topics? Explore our full collection of guides!

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