Get the results you want with this summarizing practice pack. Five passages, organizers, checklists, and rubrics help kids summarize. They learn to identify story elements and write effective paragraphs.
At the beginning of this resource, you will find links to three short videos that help kids (and their teacher) understand how to use the story arc to summarize and find a theme. This is followed by a story arc template that can be used for any story.
Three additional organizers help kids understand what they need for a summary. (1) For beginners, choose “somebody, wanted, but, then, so.” (2) As they progress, students move to characters, setting, what they wanted, what got in their way, steps they took to overcome it, and outcome. (3) Once kids know their elements, they can use the organizer that only lists character(s), setting, goal/motivation, obstacle(s), steps, and resolution. You can choose one strategy for your entire class or differentiate with multiple organizers.
Five one-page fables (written in simple, contemporary language) let kids practice their summarizing skills. After each fable, you will find two opportunities for response: a multiple-choice checklist and lined stationery.
- 4 graphic organizers (story arc, table with “somebody wanted but then so,” table scaffolding to story elements, table with story elements
- 5 fables: “The Fox and the Grapes,” “The Goose and the Golden Egg,” “The Peacock,” “The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse,” and “The Donkey and the Load of Salt”*
- Multiple-choice worksheets (with answer keys) for each fable
- Themed constructed response sheet for each fable
- List of transitional phrases
- 2 student self-check sheets (“somebody wanted but then so” and story elements)
- 3 rubrics (“somebody wanted but then so” – labeled and not labeled – and story elements)
- Stories are ordered from least to most complex, which scaffolds instruction for all students in your class.
- Multiple-choice worksheets allow students to check a box next to each of the important elements. These can be used at the beginning of the unit with all students and continued for lower readers. Additionally, these offer great opportunities for test prep.
- Organizers guide students to select key elements.
Created by master teacher Brenda Kovich, these activities are classroom-tested and kid-approved. They are also part of the Fourth Grade Literature Skills Bundle, which addresses all fourth grade literature standards.
Like each of my fourth grade literature skills units, this resource is available in three formats:
- PowerPoint – for teachers who want a clear introduction to the standard
- Practice (this resource) – for teachers whose students need extra work on the standard
- Unit – *best value* for teachers who want a complete learning cycle: direct instruction, guided practice, independent practice, and assessment (PowerPoint, practice, additional resources, companion website, and paperless Google option included)
You can choose the format that best fits your needs.
Stories were adapted from The Aesop for Children, which was published in 1919 and is now in the public domain.
Would you like to know when I post more resources? Simply follow me on TpT.
- CCSS RL.4.2 – Determine a theme of a story, drama, or poem from details in the text; summarize the text.
- Alaska Reading Standard for Literature Grade 4 – Determine a theme or author’s message or purpose of a story, drama, or poem using details and evidence from the text as support; summarize main ideas or events, in correct sequence, including how conflicts are resolved.
- Florida CPALMS LAFS.4.RL.1.2 – Determine the theme of a story, drama, or poem from details in the text; summarize the text.
- Indiana Academic Standard 4.RL.2.2 – Paraphrase or retell the main events in a story, myth, legend, or novel; identify the theme and provide evidence for the interpretation.
- Nebraska English Language Arts Standard LA 4.1.6.d – Summarize a literary text and/or media, using key details to identify the theme.
- Oklahoma Academic Standards for English Language Arts 4.2.R.3 – Students will summarize events or plots (i.e., beginning, middle, end, conflict, and climax) of a story or text.
- South Carolina College- and Career-Ready Standards Indicator 4-6.1 – Determine the development of a theme within a text; summarize using key details.
- Texas TEKS 4.3.A – Summarize and explain the lesson or message of a work of fiction and its theme.
I'm committed to continual improvement. This product was updated and enhanced on August 2, 2018.