A Beary Good Summary
Christina Metry
Reading to Learn


Rationale: Once students can read fluently, they need to be able to read for comprehension. A great way to learn how to read for comprehension is by summarizing a story or an article. In this lesson, students will learn to find the important information in a passage and create a summary from it.

Materials:
Pencil per students
highlighter per student
paper for each student
Black Bear Article overhead
http://animal.discovery.com/guides/baby-animals/mammals/black_bear.html
Walrus Article copied for each student
http://animal.discovery.com/guides/baby-animals/mammals/walrus.html
A Red and Purple overhead marker

Procedure:
1. Say: Today we are going to talk about how to write a summary. A summary is a brief statement that describes a longer article or story. It talks about what the big idea of the passage is. When we write a summary, we will only talk about the important things in the article. We are going to practice finding the important ideas in a story and getting rid of the describing details.
2. On the overhead, I have an article on black bears. This article is about how baby black bears act with each other and their environment. Their environment is their surroundings. I am going to read the whole article through one time to make sure I understand the article. If there are words I do not know, I am going to decode them and look them up if I don’t know them. Once I know and understand the article, I am going to start looking for my information. At this point, I would read the whole article aloud for the class. Then I would underline the important information in purple and the details in red.
3. Now that I know what the important information is, I am going to write my summary. I will write sentences using this information. Here I will model how to write a summary while asking the students for help.
4. It is your turn to write a summary. Each of you has a copy of the Walrus Article. I want you to highlight the important information, or the big ideas, and underline the details in pencil. On a piece of paper, write a summary describing this article and then turn it into me along with the article.

Assessment:
The students will turn in their article and summary. I can see what information they decided was important and what was not. From that, I can correct each individual as needed. Also, I can focus whole group time on the areas in which the students who struggle the most in this subject. I also will have the summary to grade. I will be able to see if the students understand what a summary is and how to write them. Again, I can use this information to correct both the individual and the class.

References:
Cummings, Rachel
http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/sightings/cummingsrl.html
Swanson, Rachel
http://www.auburn.edu/academic/education/reading_genie/sightings/swansonrl.html
Walrus Article
http://animal.discovery.com/guides/baby-animals/mammals/walrus.html
Black Bear Article
http://animal.discovery.com/guides/baby-animals/mammals/black_bear.html

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