Marlee Davis
Reading to Learn

     "A Web Of History"

Rationale: All children eventually become acquired to reading to learn. An important comprehension strategy that promotes reading to learn is summarization. By utilizing the summarization strategy, students learn to take note and remember key topics and important information. They become able to condense the important information so that they can learn more about the topic. This lesson aims at introducing and promoting this strategy.

Alabama, Its History and Geography. 4th grade text. By Dr. Donette Bower, Dr. Donald B. Dodd, Dr. Howard Johnson. Clairmont Press, Montgomery, AL. C2000. Pgs. 88-101, "Spanish Explorations and Settlements."
- paper
- pencil
- chalkboard
- chalk

1. "Today, we are going to continue our study of explorers in Alabama, "Spanish Explorations and Settlements" (information found in chapter five, pages 88-95, of the text book listed above). We are going to read and talk about Spanish explorations and settlements. I want everyone to pay attention while you read, and I want you to pick out the most important information. We will be using these main ideas to learn how to make a web, which will help us summarize this information."
2. "I want us to first practice our skill of silent reading. Everyone needs to open their books to page 88. I want everyone to read pages 88-95 of chapter five (Clairmont Press). When you are finished reading, turn your book face down. This way, I will know when everyone is through reading so that we can go on. Remember, when you read silently, you do not talk to yourself or anyone else around you. You read at your own pace. Do not rush. Take your time so that you do not miss any key information."
3. "Okay, everyone can begin reading." The teacher will walk around to observe everyone reading silently to make sure they are trying to apply the concept.
4. "Now that everyone is finished reading, we are going to learn how to summarize what we just read. Has anyone ever heard of a summary before? A summary helps us to only worry about the important information in what we read. This gets rid of all of the text that may distract us from learning the important facts. "
5. "Everyone take out a pencil and a piece of paper. We are going to make a web that will show only the important information about Spanish explorers and their settlements. I will show you how to begin". Teacher will draw a circle on the chalkboard and write the words, Spanish Explorers and Their Settlements in the middle of the cirlce. "Now, everyone do what I just did. Good. Now, I want you to draw five lines from the big circle like this." I will draw these on the board along with circles at the end of each of the lines. "Do exactly what I did ­ circles and all." When everyone has done this, have them flip their books back over. "I want you to use your books to help you find the names of five Spanish explorers. You need to write a name of a Spanish explorer in each of the five circles."
6. "When the students finish this, have them repeat the drawing of lines and circles process one more time. They should be able to draw the lines and circles on their own this time. "Now, if you need to use your book on this part, I encourage you to do so. I want you to find the most important fact about each of the five explorers you wrote in the circles. You should fill in the next circles with those important facts. For example, in the circle coming from Pineda you might write down that he sailed into Mobile Bay, because that is the most important fact about him. I want you to do the rest. Look at me when you are finished."
7. "You all have just created a web. This shows us the most important facts that you read." The class will discuss the facts they wrote down and why they felt these facts were important. The teacher will fill in the web on the chalkboard with the new and important facts that the students point out.
8. "By creating your webs, you have just summarized this section of chapter five. It is very important to summarize what you read because it helps us focus on the important information and gets rid of the information we do not need and that distracts us from learning the important stuff. Have them write a brief paragraph using only the important facts they found. Now, we will try this again. This time I will let you do the web alone. Then, we will talk about your webs, or summaries, that you create." This will let me see how well they have grasped this strategy of mapping out what they read. I will use a checklist to determine where each student stands in accomplishing our goal. "Now you will do the same for French Explorations and Settlements. You will read pages 96-101 and create a web using the most important facts. Remember to read silently." You can carry this over to the next day’s lesson instead of doing it right after the introductory lesson.

 Bower, D., Dodd D., Johnson H.  Alabama, Its History and Geography. Grade 4 textbook. Clairmont Press. Montgomery, Alabama. C2000.  "Mapping Out the Story".

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