Challenges for ELL

  • ELL students may have trouble summarizing stories, despite the fact that they understood the story.
  • ELL students may have differentiating between main ideas and details.
  • ELL students may retell the story as oppose to summarizing the story.
  • Ell students need help summarizing math and science date and facts.


  • Demonstrate to the students how to use a map to organize their ideas.
  • Educate students how to organize information and differentiate main ideas from details.
  • Show how to use graphic organizers to organize and summarize data and facts.


Content-area Objectives

Learning Strategies

Language Arts: Summarize a short story

Story map

Mathematics: Summarize information from graphs

Web summary

Science: Summarize science facts

Main idea and supporting details chart

Social Studies: Summarize biographical information

Concept cards






· Information text: explain the main idea and details of a text

· A short story or other fiction: tell about  important characters, setting, a major problem, significient events, and how a problem or conflict is resolved.

·        Many historian think Abrahan Lincoln is one of our greatest presidents because he guided the nation thorugh a terrible war and freed slaves.

·        The short story is about a boy-genius who grows up in poverty an struggles to get an education. He invents the world’s fastest computer and becomes a billionaire.

Main idea

What the text is about

The main idea of this biography is that Abraham Lincoln guided the nation through the Civil War.

Supporting ideas and details

Information that supports and helps explain the main idea

Lincoln freed the slaves during the war.


An underlying or recurring idea

In literature, themes deal with a truth about life or human nature.




Adapted Every Teacher's Toolkit Closing the Achievement Gap for English Learners.