This site is a gold mine of lessons on various informational text reading strategies that middle schoolers need to develop to understand STEM reading assignments. It's a go-to resource for mini-lessons on topics including text features, reading comprehension, using graphic organizers to organize information and more.
This sample lesson plan from the National Math and Science Initiative is an excellent template for using science texts in the middle school Language Arts classroom to help build content area reading skills that bridge both content areas. It reminds me that I can even use the textbook that my students use in science class as a text for my Language
As students learn important science vocabulary, they can create their own custom online dictionaries as an easy reference for science terms. I love that they have this resource available in the classroom via classroom computers and at home through their home computers.
One of the stumbling blocks in science texts for many middle schoolers is the complex vocabulary. This excellent article provides a variety of engaging activities for helping students learn essential science words, including games and word walls.