Smekens Education Solutions, Inc.

Retell/Summarize

Tweak Purposes & Uses of Content-Area Notebooks

Tweak the Purposes & Uses of Content-Area Notebooks
Friday, August 22nd, 2014

Rather than using student notebooks to simply store notes copied from the board, look for opportunities for students to engage with the lesson material. This requires students to go beyond restating what the teacher said or regurgitating what the text stated. [read more...]


Summarize Texts by Creating Found Poems

Summarize Texts by Creating Found Poems
Wednesday, December 18th, 2013

Common Core Reading Standard #2 references students' abilities to summarize a text's main ideas and details. However, evidence of this standard doesn't have to be revealed in a traditional after-reading summary. Teach students to craft Found Poems. [read more...]


Reinforce Content-Area Learning with ABC Lists

Reinforce Content-Area Learning with ABC Lists
Wednesday, December 18th, 2013

Young students are very familiar with lists--shopping lists, to-do lists, wish lists. Consequently, primary teachers should take advantage of this writing format, as it is a fabulous precursor to sentence writing.[read more...]


Scaffold Summarization Skills

Scaffold Summarization Skills
Tuesday, September 24th, 2013

Students must be able to read complex texts in science, social studies, math, and other technical courses with independence and confidence. Having these skills will prepare them for the sophisticated nonfiction they will encounter in college and the workforce. [read more...]


Use the Retelling Glove for Summarizing Stories

Use the Retelling Glove for Summarizing Stories
Thursday, February 2nd, 2012

The Common Core standards for reading literature require that kindergarten students be able to identify characters, settings, and major events in a story. First grade students should be able to retell a story using key details from the story. As you're working to address this standard, try the Retelling Glove. [read more...]


Helping Students Identify the Main Idea of Any Text

Helping Students Identify the Main Idea of Any Text
Thursday, March 3rd, 2011

When teaching students about main idea, scaffold your instruction. Students need to first learn how to identify the concrete and literal before they can determine the inferential. Here's a series of skills to slowly work through with your readers. [read more...]


Writing Simple Summaries and Determining Main Idea

Writing Simple Summaries and Determining Main Idea
Tuesday, January 25th, 2011

Some students struggle to summarize what they've read. They can tell you lots of specific details that were within the reading, but they can't explain the big idea, what the reading was all about. To work on summarization with her students, Kate Bieker has developed two fantastic ideas. [read more...]


Determining the Important Information

Determining the Important Information
Monday, December 7th, 2009

When you ask students to tell you what a reading passage was about, itís not uncommon for kids to just start rattling off tiny little details. Two ways to combat this problem is to introduce the ďfist listĒ and 911 Retelling. [read more...]


Create a Character Life Map

Create a Character Life Map
Friday, October 2nd, 2009

Itís not uncommon for students to take notes while reading a novel/chapter book. Itís a great way to quickly review the plot and sequence of events. And this type of note-taking can be made even more powerful for the visual learner if itís done using a plot map. [read more...]


Create Simple Summaries with Pyramids

Create Simple Summaries with Pyramids
Friday, April 24th, 2009

Iíve shared the idea of Information Pyramids previously. Itís one of my favorite strategies for getting students to summarize a main idea and to include some specific supporting details. Since sharing it, many teachers have told me of their successes with it. So I am referencing [read more...]


Use Trail Mix to Teach Summarization

Use Trail Mix to Teach Summarization
Wednesday, May 14th, 2008

Want a sweet way to encourage students to summarize? Fourth grade teacher David Henry passed out a snack mix to each of his Sweetser Elementary students. (NOTE: Provide peanut-free option by making your own trail mix. View recipes at Yummly.com.) [read more...]


My Image

Using Pictures to Jumpstart Summary Writing
Wednesday, May 14th, 2008

After reading a story or selection in the reading series, many teachers have students retell the story by writing a short summary. Woodburn Elementary second grade teacher Pam Weesner jumpstarts her summary writing with a strategy that targets her visual learners and reluctant writers. [read more...]


Using the Inside Books Covers for Simple Reader Response

Using the Inside Book Covers for Simple Reader Response
Wednesday, May 14th, 2008

Remember the days of signing your name on the library card when checking out a book? Remember scanning the card to see who had read the book before you? Or seeing your name more than once in an old favorite? Julie Meitzler has revived that feeling [read more...]


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