Fact, opinion and report writing

Learning focus

To learn the difference between fact and opinion and write a factual report.

This lesson includes:

  • two videos to help you spot the difference between what's factually true and what is someone's opinion

  • three activities

Learn

Facts can be supported by evidence whereas opinions are based on thoughts and feelings.

Watch this short clip to revise the differences between the two in more detail.

Learn how to spot what is a fact and what is an opinion.

Facts

  • Facts are definitely true.

  • They can be backed up with evidence.

For example: The Prime Minister is giving a speech.

Opinions

  • Your opinion is how you feel or what you think about something.

  • Other people might think differently or have a different opinion.

For example: Having a teenager as Prime Minister is a terrible idea.

Now watch this fun Super Movers video to learn more about facts and opinions.

Listen carefully because you’ll be answering some questions afterwards.

If you like, you can sing and dance along with Martin Dougan.

Dance along with Martin Dougan as he explains the difference between fact and opinion.

Now answer these questions.

You can think through your answers or write them down as full sentences.

1. What is a fact? Give an example from the video.

2. What is an opinion? Give an example from the video.

3. What does a fact need to be supported by?

Practise

You may need paper and a pen or pencil for some of these activities.

Activity 1

Complete this activity to show your understanding of facts and opinions.

Remember: A fact is something that is true whereas an opinion is what someone thinks or believes.

Activity 2

1. Read this Newsround article called World Lion Day: Top 5 Facts about the King of the Jungle’.

The ‘Top 5 Facts’ in the article are shown in a numbered list, from 1–5.

If you read them by themselves, some of the ‘facts’ seem like they are just opinions.

For example: Lions are very lazy.

When you read on though, you see the writer has given evidence, so you learn what they have said is actually a fact:

Lions are very lazy.

Lions love nothing more than a good snooze, sleeping for up to 20 hours a day!

2. Read through the article again. On a piece of paper, write down the evidence (facts) that support the other four parts of the article:

  • They’re all about girl power.

  • They don’t have great table manners.

  • They’re not exactly quiet!

  • They don’t like porcupines.

You can check your answers in this answer sheet.

Activity 3

Now you are going to write a short factual report about your favourite animal.

When writing your report you cannot use any opinions - just what is true about the animal. For example:

You could write:

Zebras live in the savanna and have stripy black and white coats for camouflage.

This is a fact, it is true information.

You couldn't write:

Zebras are the cutest animal in the world and they are beautiful.

This is an opinion. Some people may not agree with this so it could not be included.

 

Your report needs to include:

  • A title - Saying what animal you are writing about.

  • An introduction - Introduce your animal and give a little bit of information about what they look like.

  • Two main paragraphs - Each paragraph needs its own focus. For example: diet, habitat, appearance.

  • Subheadings - Give each paragraph its own little title.

  • A summary - Sum up the key things you have said about your animal.

Top tip!

You could look on the CBBC website to find facts about animals. You might find the Newsround website useful too. Use the search box at the top of the page to find relevant content.

Where next?

In this lesson you have learnt about the difference between fact and opinion and written a factual report.

There are other useful articles on Bitesize to help you improve your reading skills.

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