Digging for Comprehension
Rationale: Once children have learned to read words, they need to learn to read for meaning. Comprehension is the most important aspect of reading for adults and children alike. It is relatively easy to see if a student is able to read but it is harder to see if they actually comprehend what they read. This lesson is intended to help children understand what they are reading through summarization of the text.
Materials: Access to chalk and a chalkboard, paper and pencils, a copy of the article, “Digging Science” for each child, highlighters.
Procedures: 1.) Introduce lesson by explaining to the students about
summarization. (Delete trivial, select topic sentence, etc.).
is when you only write or talk about the most important things in a
2.) Today we are going to write a summary on the article, “Digging Science”. I have a copy here for everyone. To begin, I want everyone to read the article silently. As you go along, I want you to highlight the information that you think is important in the article.
3.) Now that we have finished reading, I want one person to give me a possible topic sentence. That is, I need one sentence that describes the main idea of the entire article. From this sentence, I want you, as a class, to subtract those words and ideas that you think are less important and add the one’s that you think are most important. Remember, this must be one complete sentence.
4.) Now I want us to place other important ideas about the article under the topic sentence. These are called subtopics. These will probably be those that you highlighted on your copy of the article. Raise your hand if you have one.
5.) This has given us the main idea of the article with only the most important facts included.
Assessment: For assessment, I would ask the students to take the
that we did in class together and create a new summary, only in
form. I will walk around the classroom and read everyone’s summary and
help when it is needed.
Reference: Science and Children. “Digging Science”. National Science Teacher’s Association. May 2000 Vol. 37 #8, p 28-32.
Eldredge, Lloyd J. Teaching Decoding in Holistic Classroooms. Prentice Hall Inc., 1995 pgs.167, 168
Click here to return to Insights