The Sum of it All
Reading to Learn
Christy Turner

    Summarization is key to reading comprehension.  By being able to summarize, students are able to find key points and main ideas in a story.  In this lesson, the students will access real-life articles in order to pull valuable information from them.

Copies of Trouble in the Amazon and A Brighter Future articles for each student
Whiteboard Markers
Summary Checklist for each student
Projector or Smartboard

1. “Today we are going to learn about summarization.  Can anybody tell me what that is?  Right.  Summarizing means that you look for the main points in a story.”

2. “There is actually a checklist for you to look at when you are summarizing.” [Pass out checklists].  “Okay, let’s go over this together.”

3. We will then take turns reading out the checklist:
*Pick out important details that are necessary to the story
*Pick out less important or repeated ideas from the passage and cross through them.
*Highlight the important and necessary details using key words.
*Pick out a topic sentence.
*Create a topic sentence if there isn’t one.

4. I will then model to the class how to use their summary checklists.  “Let’s look at the article called A Brighter Future and use our checklist.”  I will read the article out loud to the class as I show it on the projector or smartboard.  “What details are important in this article?  Good, the U.N. is a group of nations working together for peace. “ I will allow the students to go through the article and look for important pieces and underline what the students point out as important information.  “Now what can we cross through in here that’s not really needed or is said more than once?”  I will find one first and then ask the students if they see any more as I cross them out on the board for them to see.  “What are some important key words in here?  What about overcrowded?”  Students, again, will continue as I demonstrate.  “Alright, now what is the topic sentence in this article?  Is there one?  What do we do if there isn’t one?  Right, we create one.   Good job!”

5. “Okay, now that we know all about summarizing, let’s take a look at this article individually called “Trouble in the Amazon”.  Now when you read through it, I want you to use your checklists and create a summary for the article.”

6. Students will then individually go through and read their articles and summarize them using their checklists.

7. When students are done going through and summarizing, I will take volunteers to share their summaries.

    I will assess the students based on their completion of the activity and the accuracy of their summaries that they share.

Time for Kids: A Brighter Future.,27972,1726339,00.html
Time for Kids: Trouble in the Amazon.,27972,1730200,00.html