Summing it up!



Malorie Poole 



As students become better readers, it is important for them to understand and gain meaning from what they are reading. Summarizing allows students to pick out important information from a story, and leave the unimportant parts behind. When students summarize, they identify and recall main ideas and events that happened in the story. This lesson will show students how to pick out the important information and from texts and summarize it into their own words.



-A copy of "Is Pluto No Longer a Planet?" article (1 per student)

-A transparency of the article "Is Pluto No Longer a Planet?" (or a document camera)

- Summarization rules: pick out a topic sentence, pick out important facts from the passage, remove information that is not very useful or that does not back up the topic sentences, pick out repeated ideas and delete them. (Show this on a document camera, smart board, or on a transparency.)

-Highlighter (1 per student)

-Pencils (1 per student)



1. "Hello class! Today we are going to learn about an important tool that makes us better readers. It is called summarization. Can anyone tell me what this means? That's correct! Summarization is summing up all of the important information from the things we read so we can understand it and deleting everything else that is not needed. Today we are going to read an article and summarize it!"

2. "First we need to talk about the summarization rules. [Show rules via document camera, smart board, or on a transparency.] We begin by picking out the topic sentence, or what the story is about, and then we take out the information that is not useful or not important. If there is anything that is repeated we need to take that information out also."

3. "Now we are going to read an article about Pluto and summarize it." [Pass out the articles.] "Now begin reading the article silently to yourself."

[Display the copy of the article and pass out highlighters] "Now that we have read the passage, let's look at it and decide what is important. What is the topic sentence? Good! Everyone highlight the topic sentence on your article. What is important in the first paragraph? Great! Highlight those sentences also. Now what information is not important in the article? Cross those sentences out with your pencil." [Continue through the rest of the article]

4. Now everyone take out a sheet of paper and write a summarization about the article. It needs to be about four sentences long."



The students will find their own article on the National Geographic for kids website, and they will highlight the important sentences and write one paragraph summary about their article. The students will turn this in for the teacher to look at and grade.





Is Pluto No Longer a Planet?-


National Geographic Kids-


Jernigan, Katelyn: Somebody's Summarizing!





Return to Realizations Index