Summaries and Superfudge

27 Sep

The NYTimes Learning Network is a great place to look for interesting lessons. I am particularly looking forward to this new series in skills lessons, which begins today with summarizing. Our sixth grade teachers told me a few weeks ago how much trouble their kids have with summaries, and I remember from my years as a graduate assistant teaching freshman comp that the skills don’t come a whole lot easier to college freshmen. It shouldn’t be a hard sell to get kids to buy in to the fact that summarizing will be important in their lives, no matter what they decide to do after high school. So, check out the ideas posted in this article, and let me know if you try them out.

As a parent, I’m trying to start early. My husband and I have begun reading chapter books to our first grader, and last night, as we finished Superfudge, we started thinking about what to read next and realized we already couldn’t remember what books we’d read to her so far. (Charlotte’s Web has been everyone’s hands-down favorite up to this point.) Anyway, what came from that discussion was the idea of having our daughter start keeping a scrapbook of her reading. I’m thinking she can write the title of the book, a few sentences about what it was about and maybe a reflection or two; illustrations are also allowed 🙂 I mean, other than the drawing part, that’s pretty much what we asked our freshman comp students to do. Oh, poor offspring of a nerdy English teacher – she’s working up annotated bibliographies at 6!

How can we help our kiddos become natural summarizers? Also, if you can think of any awesome chapter books for six-year-olds, please let me know 🙂

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