Summarizing Heroes

Summarizing Heroes 


Reading to Learn 


Lauren Nix





Rationale: Reading is the initial step for students to learn new information. For students to learn they must be able to summarize text. It is crucial for them to differentiate between insignificant and significant information. In this lesson I will teach students how to summarize. I will explicitly teach the strategy of summarizing by first explaining and modeling, then guided practice, and finally individual summarization of a text and answering comprehension questions. 


Materials: 

  • A New Home published by ReadWorks.org
  • Overhead of A New Home (a single article page)
  • Overhead pen
  • Photocopies of A New Home 
  • Assessment checklist for each student


Procedures 

  1. Explain why summarizing is beneficial 

 Say: “You might be asking yourself what summarizing means. When you summarize something, you are taking the most important parts of the text that you are reading. This strategy is useful when you are reading a long book or article that is explaining something. When we summarize, it makes looking at the information less confusing. Summarizing helps us understand the most important part of a text. We will no longer have to worry about the non-important information.” 


  1. Background knowledge 

Say: “There are a few words that we need to look at before we read this article. They are immigrant and diverse. Immigrant is a person who goes to a foreign country to live permanently. An example of this would be for someone to come from Korea to live in America for the rest of their lives. Let’s see if we can figure what an immigrant would be. Who would be considered an immigrant: a boy that has lived in Alabama and that still lives in Alabama or a girl that was born in Japan and now lives in Georgia? [Allow wait time]. The girl would be considered an immigrant. Now, let’s practice finishing a sentence about an immigrant. We have an immigrant living down the street from us, she is from... [Allow all of the children to answer]. Now, we are going to look at the word diverse. Diverse simply means different. In the article we are going to read, diverse means that people are different from each other. An example of diverse would be for a classroom to be made up students from different countries, such as America, Japan, Korea, and Mexico. Let’s see if we can figure out if a classroom would be diverse or not: a classroom of all girls that just have blonde hair or a class of boys and girls with all different colored hair? [Allow wait time]. The answer would be the classroom with boys and girls with all different colored hair. Now, let’s practice finishing a sentence about the word diverse. My group of friends is very diverse. We... [Allow all of the children to answer]. 


  1. Explain how to use the strategy 

-Say: “When we summarize something, we have to read a little at a time, like a paragraph or a page. After we get done reading this small part of the text, we go back and pick out the most important parts of what we just read. We do include the information does not make the main idea better. We have to be very selective in what we choose that we think it important. Summarizing helps us understand what the most important parts of a long passage are. 


  1. Model the strategy. 

-Say: “Now I’m going to show you how to summarize this paragraph from the article A New Home. I’m only going to pick out the important parts of the text. First, I’m going to read the entire paragraph. ‘Anthony Castillo calls two countries home. The 8-year-old was born in the Dominican Republic, a country in the Caribbean Sea. Later, Anthony moved to New York City. Some of his relatives still live in the Dominican Republican. So this paragraph gives us some great information. What I am going to do is underline the important parts. We want to figure out who this paragraph is about and what is information is important for figuring that out. The paragraph is about Anthony Castillo, so now we need to find out about him. Anthony Castillo calls two countries home. The 8-year-old was born in the Dominican Republic, a country in the Caribbean Sea. Later, Anthony moved to New York City. Some of his relatives still live in the Dominican Republican.’ What was so important about Anthony Castillo? He has two countries, the Dominican Republic and the United States. Does everyone notice what information is important and which is not? What is underlined is the important information, which becomes the summary. The summary is: Anthony Castillo has two home countries, the Dominican Republic and the United States.”


  1. Simple Guided Practice 

-Say: “Now that we have a pretty good understand of what summarizing looks like, let’s practice doing it together. We are going to red the second paragraph. ‘I didn't like living in the United States at first. But now I do," Anthony told Weekly Reader. Anthony started to like his new home after he made some friends. He said that, in a way, he has already "seen the world" by having lived in two countries. What is the most important part of this passage? Let's underline the most important parts. "I didn't like living in the United States at first. But now I do," Anthony told Weekly Reader. Anthony started to like his new home after he made some friends. He said that, in a way, he has already "seen the world" by having lived in two countries. Now that we have read, we can now put the most important parts together to make our summary. So for the summary of the second paragraph, it is: At first, Anthony Castillo did not like living in the United States, but then he made new friends and it soon became his new home. Do you see how our summary gives us the main idea of the paragraph and does not have the unimportant things? I know I do!




6. Whole Text Practice 

-Say: “We are going to practice summarizing again. We are going to do this by finishing the article. I want each of you to read the last four paragraphs and write a summary for each one, so in all, you will have four summaries. Why is the United States called the Melting Pot? Where do most of the immigrants come from? What does it mean if people are all different? How is the United Sates diverse?”


  1. Assessment 

-Say: “I will call on you guys to read and summarize the paragraphs from our article and answer comprehension questions about what you have read. So I will have the students read the last four paragraphs of "A New Home", using the summarization checklist (see below). I will also ask comprehension questions: Who is Anthony Castillo? Where does he live now? Where is he from? How many immigrants live in the United States? Why is the United States called a melting pot? Why is the United States considered a diverse country? Where do many of the immigrants come from?



When summarizing, did the student…

YES

NO

Delete unimportant information?

 

 

Delete repeated information?

 

 

Organize items with a big idea?

 

 

Select a topic?

 

 

Write an inclusive, simple topic sentence to summarize the passage?

 

 


 


References: 

Wilson, Haley. Notes to Nutshells 

http://www.auburn.edu/%7Ehaw0003/wilsonrl.htm



Weekly Reader. "A New Home." Weekly Reader Corporation, 2007. Web.

http://www.readworks.org/sites/default/files/bundles/passages-new-home_files.pdf



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