I’m teaching this lesson because my students need practice identifying main idea. There are questions on assessments (state and district) that are multiple choice and ask them to choose the best answer. This is the second lesson I have taught this way. Please refer to Practice Summarizing with Short Stories to see the first lesson.
My goal is to help my students summarize in 3 ways. I’m using the ‘arrow’ and idea of 'pointing' to the main idea because I think kids need something visual representation of how the 2 ideas support or point to the main idea. I also am asking them to choose a main idea from a list of three and to further deconstruct the text to identify the main idea with supporting details, which is a Common Core Standard. (RL.2.2) The shift in Common Core Standards encourage students to choose a main idea and show ‘why’ they chose that idea. This is foundational for good reading and a skill that students need to practice. Finally, I want them to be able to summarize a book, by using the main ideas in each section. We do this as a group and then the students practice.
Underlined words below are lesson vocabulary words that are emphasized and written on sentence strips for my Reading & Writing word wall. I pull off the words off the wall for each lesson, helping students understand this key 'reading and writing' vocabulary can be generalized across texts and topics. The focus on acquiring and using these words is part of a shift in the Common Core Standards towards building students’ academic vocabulary. My words are color coded ‘pink’ for literature/’blue’ for reading strategies/’orange’ for informational text/'yellow' for writing/’green’ for all other words)
Get students engaged & bring students to a common starting point in learning
I chose to work on this website with the students. The language level ('pirate speech') is a little difficult and his accent is pretty thick. However, the initial explanation of summarizing and his little summaries are really visual as we moved the sentences. My kids LOVED the website and it was fun to go through it as a group.
Give the purpose of the lesson
Explain the strategy
Demonstrate the project - slide 11-14
Explain the task
As students examine these multi paragraph texts, they are asked to identify the main topic and supporting details. (RI.2.2) The Common Core Standards wants them to be 'close readers' who are able to analyze the text as they read. Can they identify what the text is about (main idea)? What supports that main idea (details)? How can they show this is the main idea? This ability to return to text, specifically informational text with topics that are cross curricular, allow the students deepen their comprehension.
Show what you’ve learned
Scaffolding and Special Education: This lesson could be scaffolded up or down, depending on student ability.
I read the paragraphs with my students who had language challenges. We sat as a group and I gave them prompts for writing.
Students with more ability should be encouraged to use some of the vocabulary from the topic, such as 'colonist', 'taxes' and 'ruled'.