Super Summarizers


Reading to Learn
Allison Brock

Rationale: Students will get practice summarizing while they are reading, which will help them to remember what they just read.

Materials: copies of the article ãTrouble at the Whitehouseä from Time for Kids Magazine (October 31, 2005) for each student, summarization checklist, markers, paper, pencil, and chalk

1. Begin by asking the students if they remember talking about silent reading.  Discuss that we use silent reading to helps us understand what we are reading.  Then tell the students that there are other ways to comprehend a story, and one way is through summarization.  Ask them if any of them know what summarizing means.  Explain that summarizing is retelling something in our own words, but only including the main parts.  Then tell the students ã I am going to teach a few necessary steps that will help you begin to summarize your readings, and then we will practice summarizing some text together.ä

There are three easy steps to summarization. Write the steps on the board while explaining them.

Step 1:  Keep the most important details.

Step 2:  Get rid of the less important details.

Step 3:  Write it in your own words.

3.  Pass out the article ãTrouble at the Whitehouseä from Time for Kids Magazine (October 31, 2005) to each student. Tell them to begin reading the article silently to themselves and be sure to give them enough time to finish reading it.

4.  Model for the students how to summarize the first paragraph.  Read the first paragraph out loud to the students and tell the students to listen for important details.  Then summarize the first paragraph aloud for the students: ãThe Vice Presidentâs Chief of Staff resigned after he was accused of lying under oath.ä After summarizing the paragraph, remind the students of the three steps used to summarize the paragraph.

5. Give the students a chance to look over the article silently again.

6. Have the students summarize the rest of the article by themselves.  Remind them to only keep the main details and get rid of the less important ones.  Also remind them to use their own words.

7. While the students are summarizing, walk around the classroom to be sure they are not having problems.

8. Assessment:  Take up the studentâs summaries and check that they kept the important details, got rid of the less important ones, and used their own words.

Beason, Margaret.  ãSumming It Up Can be Fun!!ä <>

ãTrouble at the Whitehouse.ä  Time for Kids Magazine.  October 31, 2005.

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