Whatís Important to You?

Reading to Learn Lesson Plan
Shay Mink

Rationale: I am going to teach this lesson because the ability to read informative text and synthesize information will be essential to the rest of the studentís educational career.  I will model how to effectively summarize information in articles so that all of the main ideas and pertinent information will be remembered by students. I have taken a strategy from the Pressley article "that students could learn to carry out for themselves." (Pressley, p.4)

Materials: "Fighting a Mystery Illness"-magazine article.
 "A New Crew in Space"-magazine article.

1.  Today we are going to learn a new strategy that will help us be better readers.  The last time we met we learning how important silent reading was to becoming a good reader.  Can anyone tell me a few good reasons or some places that we would want to read silently?  Teacher will lead short class discussion on importance of silent reading.  Teacher will review how silent reading is important where there is a large group of people and if everyone was reading out loud no one would be able to pay attention to what they were reading because they would get distracted.  Also, if people always read out loud, then during church people would read their Bible's out loud and that would be rude and disruptive.  The class will come up with some other instances of where silent reading is valuable.
2.  Teacher will explain that being able to read an informative text and gather     information from it will prove to be one of the most valuable tools that the students will gain while in forth grade.  When you learn how to effectively read text and look for information you will become a better reader.  You will be able to read magazine, newspapers, and books and learn from them.  You will not always learn information about the world that you may think is interesting, but you will become a better reader.  When you read enjoyable texts because you will notice all of the important information that you will store in your memory to recall.
3.  Teacher will read aloud to the class, "Fighting a Mystery Illness," as the students read along silently with their copy of the article.  The teacher will then ask the class to tell her what they remembered about the article and write these ideas on the board.  The teacher will ask the students why they remembered these particular facts over other facts in the article.  The teacher will tell the students that the ideas that are most important in a text are the oneís they want to remember.  The class will look thought their list of what they remembered and decide which ideas are most important.
4.  The teacher will ask the class to pretend that they are the teacher for a forth grade class and that they have to test their student on the article that was just read to them.  How will they know that their students read the article?  What type of open-ended questions could be asked to make the teacher know that the students comprehended the text?  Teacher will explain that this is what she does when she plans for a test because she wants to know that the students have grasped the main ideas of the lesson, not that they know every specific detail.
5. Teacher will write "Fighting a Mystery Illness" in a box on the chalkboard.  Then the teacher will draw three different boxes connecting to the title box.  Each box will have a specific topic: Where, Protection, Virus.  In each of the boxes the teacher will write what important ideas were discussed about these topics in the article.  Teacher will discuss as she writes why she thought these points were so important.
6. Teacher will distribute a copy of "A New Crew in Space" to each student.  Teacher will ask each student to read the article and do a brainstorm web, like the one on the board, about the new article.  The teacher will walk around and make sure that students are on task and answer any questions that a student might have.
7. Teacher will instruct the class that everyone should get a partner and have a peer conference on the Space article and show the web that they created.  Students should discuss what they thought the most important ideas were and why.  If during the peer conference, one of the students feel that they wrote something on their web that was too specific to make the cut, then they can turn their paper over and make a new web. As a teacher, I would want to see the initial web to gauge the students thought process.
8. For assessment, the teacher will look at each studentís web and will see that the students grasp the idea that the most important ideas were remembered and comprehended.  The teacher can also have the students write in their journals about the two articles so that the teacher could guage comprehension.


Nabali, D. (2003) "Fighting a Mystery Illness" Time for Kids. www.timeforkids.com

Naali, D. (2003) "A New Crew in Space" Time for Kids. www.timeforkids.com

Pressley, M. (1989) Strategies that Improve Childrenís Memory and Comprehension of Text.  The Elementary School Journal. Vol. 90 p.4

Click here to return to Openings