As students read a novel, either in groups or independently, it is important to review what they have read and make predictions about what could happen next. The summarization chart allows you to check that all students are completing the reading, discuss essential plot events, question the author’s choices, and make predictions about future events. This is a short activity, after being introduced and modeled, that can be used as a review and a transition into the next reading selection.

Group Size: Any

Learning Objectives:

Students will be able to:
• Summarize the key plot events of a reading selection by identifying three key events and composing a main idea sentence.
• Predict what may happen next in the novel by using details from the previous reading selection to support the prediction.


Guiding Question:

• What is plot? • How do you decide if a plot event is essential or extraneous? • How can you make an informed prediction?


Summarization chart - graphic organizer (Copies can be made for each student) Summarization chart – model


(This lesson can be used after reading chapter one of the novel. Alternatively, this lesson can be adapted to follow any reading selection)

Do Now: 5- minute Journal Response (8 line expectation)
What were the main events of chapter one?

Review the student responses with random questioning and make a class brainstorm (approx. 6-10 responses) . Have students explain why some events are more important than others. Discuss and model the difference between essential and extraneous plot events.
Ask students to independently write down what the most important events form the class list. As a class discuss and discard all but three of the plot events.

Guided Practice
Distribute “Summarization Chart” graphic organizer to students and explain they will be using the chart to summarize each chapter of the novel. Chapter one will be done together as a class.
Fill in the key events column using the list made during the mini-lesson.
Model how to complete the somebody-wanted-but-so summary sentence (SWBSS) (adapted from K. Beers (2003) When Kids Can’t Read What Teachers Can Do) for chapter one. Discuss choosing the character to focus on using the key events column, what that character wanted in the chapter, any problems the character faced and finally what happened. Students should take notes as you model so they have an example on their charts.
Using the SWBSS, model and discuss making a prediction for chapter two. There may be conflicts that have not been resolved, the chapter ended on a cliffhanger, a new character was introduced. Make sure the predictions are using the evidence that has been gathered on the chart.

Independent Practice
After reading chapter two, students can work in pairs or independently to complete the summary chart for chapter two. Make sure all work is checked for understanding at this stage. Beyond this point, the summary chart can be completed before the students begin a new chapter. It is a great way to review and a good jumping off point for deeper discussion.


The summary chart is an ongoing formative assessment. The teacher can decide if the chart is going to be a grade or assess understanding based on participation in discussion.

Attached Files:



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