Be Stupendous and Summarize!

 

Reading to Learn

 

Ashley Bledsoe

 

Rationale: It is so important for students to comprehend and understand what they read. There are several strategies that students can use to help them comprehend while reading. Summarizing is one of the most important strategies for students to use during reading. When students summarize, they pick out important information and delete the information that is not as important. The goal of this lesson is to help students understand more of what they read by finding and summarizing key points in any given text. For this lesson, students will eliminate trivial and repeated information from an article to arrive at a one-sentence summary.

 

Materials:

Chomp! Meat-Eating Plants article

Honeybee Mystery article (1 per student)

Computer

SMARTboard

Poster with summarization rules

      Delete trivial information (unnecessary information)

      Delete repeated information.

      Select a topic.

      Write topic sentence that covers all important parts of each paragraph.

Pencils (1 per student)

 

Procedure:

1. Say: Today we are going to be talking about summarizing. Who can tell me what the word summarize means? Great! It means to pick out the most important information while reading and to delete the information that isn't as important. It is very important to summarize while reading so that we comprehend and remember what we read.

 

2. Say: Let's look at the rules of summarization together. [Direct attention to poster] I'll read them first and then you'll repeat after me. [After reading rules, teacher will model how to use the strategies.]

3. Say: Before we get started, I would like to introduce some key words that are important for you to understand the article. Let's look at the word insect. An insect is a small six-legged animal. An insect wouldn't be something like an elephant or a frog. Which one of these is more like an insect: An ant or horse? Finish this sentence: The insect's body…

[Introduce more words]

 

4. Say: Now, I will show you how to use these strategies and you'll be the perfect summarizer in no time! Please look at the SMARTboard and pay close attention as I show you how to summarize this paragraph.

5. Say: Now, I'll read the first and second paragraph of the article. I want people to get passionate about plants," says Lisa Van Cleef about a new exhibit at the San Francisco Conservatory of Flowers. "Everybody gets excited about the zoo and animals, but once you start looking at plants you find they have a lot going on, too!

 

Especially the carnivores, or meat eaters, that use the sneakiest of tricks to trap their insect dinners. Take bladderworts, for example. They appear so small and delicate growing in a quiet pond. But these are the fastest-known killers of the plant kingdom, able to suck in unsuspecting mosquito larvae in 1/50 of a second using a trap door!

 

6. Say: We need to start by deleting the unnecessary or trivial information. Look at the first paragraph. I see information that we don't really need. We don't need any extra information, any examples, any descriptions, or any definitions. Those are things that can be deleted and will help us arrive at a more effective summary. [Talk through the unnecessary information and cross out]

 

I want people to get passionate about plants," says Lisa Van Cleef about a new exhibit at the San Francisco Conservatory of Flowers. "Everybody gets excited about the zoo and animals, but once you start looking at plants you find they have a lot going on, too!

 

Especially the carnivores, or meat eaters, that use the sneakiest of tricks to trap their insect dinners. Take bladderworts, for example. They appear so small and delicate growing in a quiet pond. But these are the fastest-known killers of the plant kingdom, able to suck in unsuspecting mosquito larvae in 1/50 of a second using a trap door!

 

7. Say: We now need to look for and delete any repeated information. We don't really have any information that's being repeated, so we now need to select our topic. What's the topic? That's right! The topic can be "Plants that are carnivores." I should now be able to write a topic sentence. My topic sentence is: Plants that are carnivores are very quick when using different tricks to trap their food.

 

8. Say: Let's try summarizing the next paragraph together. Let's read it first. [Call on students to read paragraph.] We need to cross out some things. What's unnecessary? What things are repeated in the paragraph?  You guys are doing such a great job deleting the trivial and repeated information!

Carnivorous plants grow in places with soil that doesn't offer much food value. "You and I could take a vitamin pill," says Van Cleef. "But these amazing plants have had to evolve over thousands of years, developing insect traps to get their nutritional needs met. Just look at all they've done in the fight to survive." 

What's the topic? That's right! The topic is food. What could our summary sentence be?  Very good sentence! Plants that are carnivores have worked very hard to get their food by forming traps that allow them to eat!

9. Say: Now I'm going to have you do it alone! I would like for you to read each paragraph of the article that I'm about to hand out. [Give booktalk] The article is about honeybees flying away from their hives and dying all of a sudden. Since the hives are empty, people are starting to worry about important crops. You'll have to read and find out if they are able to figure out why the bees are so important for the food crops. As you're reading, I would like for you to cross out any unneccessary information using your pencil. Use everything that you've learned, so that your summary is great!

Assessment: Students will use what they have learned to summarize each paragraph of the article. I will check their work using a 'summarizing' rubric. If a student misses a point for anything, the student will have to correct the mistake(s). By doing this, they will truly understand how to properly summarize information.

 

 

Did the student…

Yes

Delete trivial information?

 

Delete repeated information?

 

Select a topic?

 

Write a simple topic sentence to summarize the paragraph?

 

 

 

References:

Chomp! Meat-Eating Plants

http://kids.nationalgeographic.com/kids/stories/animalsnature/meat-eating-plants/

 

Honey Bee Mystery

http://kids.nationalgeographic.com/kids/stories/animalsnature/honey-bee-mystery/

 

Woods, Rebekah. "What's that you say?"

http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/realizations/woodsrl.htm

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