Summarization Steps


Desiree Bennett Reading to Learn



Rationale:  The goal of reading is being able to comprehend what you have read.  Summarization is a great strategy for children to comprehend.  This lesson will help children understand and comprehend a story through summarization.


Materials:  Computer for each student with internet access, Tornado, paper, pencil, chalk, and chalkboard



  1. Introduce the lesson by reviewing the five questions: who, what, when, where, and why.  Ask the children what the five questions and count them on our hands.
  2. Ask the students, if they can tell you, “what does the word comprehension mean?  It is understanding and remembering what we read.  Today we will learn a strategy to help us with comprehension.  This strategy is called summarization.  When we summarization we choose the most important ideas, the main idea, from the story and eliminate the less important ideas.”
  3. This strategy has three steps.  Write them on the board.  “The first step is to pick out important ideas that are necessary to the story.  The second step is to eliminate the less important details from the story.  The third step is to pick combine the important ideas into one main idea.”
  4. “Now that we know the strategy lets try it out.  Read the first paragraph in the article at  This article is about tornados.”
  5. After the children have read the paragraph silently, summarize it as a class.  “What were three important facts from that paragraph?”  List them on the board.  “What ideas were not important?”  List them on the board.  “What one sentence sums up the important ideas?”  Write it on the board. 
  6. “Now read the rest of the article silently.  Using the strategies you have learned summarize the article on paper to hand in to me. Remember to eliminate the less important ideas and combine the important ideas into one main idea.”
  7. Assess the children by taking up their summarizations of the whole article.  Also walk around as they are working to make sure everyone is on the right track.  Each summarization must have the important ideas form the article, the unnecessary ideas, and the main idea.


References:, Kelly Star.  Simple Summarization Steps.  


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