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Identifying Fact and Opinion:
Is That a Fact?

Read this passage about the Northwest's old-growth forests.

The northern spotted owl has become the symbol of the fight over the Northwest's oldgrowth forests. There are only 4,000 to 6,000 of these birds left, which makes the spotted owl a threatened species. In 1990, the government said that 7 million acres of forest was off limits to the timber industry. This would save the owls, but could cost 33,000 jobs. But I don't think the debate is just about jobs and owls. It's about saving an important natural resource. If we aren't careful with our resources, we could upset the balance of our beautiful blue planet.

1. Find the facts in the passage and underline them with a red crayon.

2. Underline the opinion with a blue crayon.

3. Find the words or phrases that signaled an opinion and circle them with a green crayon.

4. Write a "fact" that you would want to check.

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5. What sources could you use to check facts in this passage?

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6. How might the passage be different if it were written by someone in the timber industry? Write your answer on the back of this sheet.

For more practice, try Identifying Fact and Opinion: Dinosaur Fossils.


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