This resource contains nonfiction reading passages and activities to help students build a better understanding of what makes a good summary when summarizing informational text. The activities build on each other to help you scaffold and differentiate as necessary. Many summary examples are provided - examples of both good summaries and bad summaries. This helps make teaching summarizing to upper elementary students easier.
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This resource focuses on helping students understand that:
1. Summaries should only include information from reading passage or book. Additional information should not be added to a summary.
2. Summaries should only include what the author of the passage thinks. You do not add your own opinion to a summary.
3. Summaries should only include the most important information. Students should only summarize key details.
4. Summaries should include enough information to tell the important ideas, but not too many unimportant details.
5. Summaries should be in your own words. A summary should not be copied word for word.
Each of these aspects of a summary are practiced in isolation with a reading passage and a cut and paste activity. Practicing each aspect of a summary in isolation helps make summarizing more understandable to all of your 3rd grade, 4th grade, or 5th grade students, including ELL students or special education students.
You can use these activities as summarizing lessons, or have students practice what they have already learned in a center. There are also activities that could be used as a summarizing assessment, or as a summarizing review.
This summarizing informational text resource does NOT have students practice writing their own summaries. Instead, it is laying the foundation so that students have a really thorough understanding of what makes a good summary. This resource has students spend a lot of time differentiating between "good" summaries and "bad" summaries so that students know what should included when they begin to write their own.
I have a similar resource for Summarizing Fiction.
Check out the preview to see how this resource builds on different skills and to see everything included.
If your students are struggling with summarizing, they might need a more solid understanding of main idea. You might find my best selling Main Idea Resource useful.
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Kalena Baker, Teaching Made Practical