Shaking Things Up In Summarization

Elizabeth Crosby

Reading To Learn Design


The purpose of this lesson is teaching children how to summarize. This lesson emphasizes using the five "W" questions to help find the
most important information in the text. Knowing how to summarize allows children the ability to read text and only pull out the
necessary information, which they need to know.


Branley, Franklyn M, illustrated by Richard Rosenblum. Earthquakes. Thomas Y. Crowell, New York.




1.  Today class we are going to learn how to summarize what we are reading. We are going to carry over what we are learning in Science to our reading lesson today. Summarization is when you read something and pull out the main ideas of what you are reading. Summarizing will help you remember key points in a story and help you understand what you are reading.

2.  To help you find main ideas I will give you some questions to think about. The five questions are: What is the story about, who is the story about? Where is the story taking place? When is the story taking place? Why is the story taking place? These questions can be applied to whatever you are reading.

3.  Today we are going to read a book on Earthquakes. This is where you model how to find the main ideas. I will read the first page aloud and say what the main ideas of the book are by using my five questions. You will then continue reading Earthquakes silently and write down what you think is the main idea on each page. Remember to use your questions. They make summarizing much easier. If you need any help raise your hand and I will come to you. After everyone is done we will discuss each main idea you found and why you believe it is the main idea and what questions you asked yourself to find the main ideas.

4.  For assessment. I will have another non-fictional book about earthquakes at my desk. I will pick out a page and will call each student up to my desk one at a time.I will ask them what the five “W” questions and have them apply it to the page they just read to me.


Branley, Franklyn M., illustrated by Richard Rosenblum. Earthquakes. Thomas Y. Crowell, New York

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