How to teach summary….maybe that has run across your mind. I know it did for me as a new to upper elementary teacher!
What do students need to know and what lessons for summarizing are best to teach – that’s what you’re looking for.
How to Teach Summary
A great beginning summarizing activity is the classic Somebody, Wanted, But, So, Then (SWBST).
SWBST can be applied to ANY text, done on your fingers, and an easy way for students to grasp the idea quickly.
Modeling in whole group and with an anchor chart as a reminder is important
Moving to small group and independent work where you as a teacher can really hone in on summary writing would be helpful.
Ask students to summarize short stories, books they are reading or even a read aloud as helpful summarizing activities.
Two of my favorite summarizing activities are Listening Centers! I know students are getting the level of rigor needed for skill practice (FREE to try – see below!)
Into the Book is a FAVORITE for reading strategies and practice – sometimes we do together and other times they work alone. This is PACKED with great content (I always choose no login option)
Best books to teach summarizing
The Man Who Walked Between the Towers- a beautiful nonfiction book about a man’s profession. With easy to track events this lends itself to a great summarizing lesson.
The Librarian of Basra – another nonfiction gem that not only opens students up to other cultures but also has great discussion points that can relate.
A Day’s Work – an Eve Bunting great, again is an eyeopening book relating to a chosen job and choices made. Such a beautiful tale!
My Name is Georgia – heavy on the nonfiction of this list! A biographic story but for summarizing and sequencing events combined with learning of a new famous person is exciting.
Wilfrid Gordon MacDonald Partridge – a silly tale with fun series of events perfect to use for a summarizing lesson.
Save yourself time while squeezing in test prep and grab your QR Listening Centers NOW!
If you want more 3-5 grade ELA activities, info, and ideas check out SSSTeaching!