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A Sponge is a Summary

Heather Rader shares a concrete analogy that students (and teachers) love for understanding how summaries work.

Dear Mrs. T: Moving Students from Summaries to Rich Response

Karen Terlecky shares how student letter writing about books has evolved over the years.  The secret? Karen uses student letters from previous years as mentor texts for moving her 5th graders from summaries to more sophisticated responses.

Teaching Summary with Book Blurbs

Katherine Sokolowski finds her fifth graders can give detailed retellings during conferences, but struggle to come up with succinct summaries. Writing book blurbs is her creative solution for building summarizing skills.

Related Videos
5th Grade Strategy Group on Summarizing

In this strategy group, Karen Terlecky brings together three of her 5th graders to reread a nonfiction article shared with the whole class. They discuss main ideas, and do a writing activity together to build summarizing skills.

Main Ideas, Summaries, and Notes in a Reading Conference

In this conference with a 4th grader, Aimee Buckner tackles text choice, notes, and main ideas all in less than five minutes. You’ll notice teachers observing in the background – the conference is part of a demonstration lesson sequence.

The Sponge Summary Lesson Part 6

In this sequence of videos, Heather teaches a 4th grade class, using the analogy of a sponge to explain how summaries work. In this final video, Heather and students debrief and capture their learning in writing.

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