Sunday, March 04, 2012

Summarizing Non Fiction Text


The non fiction article I selected came from National Geographic Explorer magazine.  There is also a Teacher's Manual created by National Geographic as reference if needed.  The topic and images that go along with the article will engage kids and allow me to make connections to our Science lessons on Invertebrates and Vertebrates as well.

The main objective is to help students summarize and synthesize the information.  I am planning on 3-5 guided reading lessons using this article.

Here's the link to my lesson on Google Doc's or take a look below.

Summarizing Non-Fiction Text
Guided Reading Lesson
Grade 5

Fifth grade students will learn how to summarize sections of a non-fiction article.

Text Selection:

Got Poison?

National Geographic Explorer

Introducing the Text:
Guided Participation

Demonstrate and communicate needed information which:

Removes some complexities
Allows reader to take on new challenges.

  • Help students make personal connections to the images in the article Got Poison?

  • Ask them what they already know about the topic (poisonous animals)

  • Identify the Bold Titles of each section

  • Point out that each section will provides information about different animals

  • Show students how to use the glossary to identify the meaning of the highlighted words.

Reading the Text:
Students will read the first two sections, It’s Night and Poison Power, independently.

Discussing and Revisiting the Text:
Lead a discussion to help students:

  • Summarize and synthesize information

  • Communicate their ideas

  • Make inferences about the text.

1. Many animals use toxins—poisonous substances in poison and venom—to
survive. In some cases, they use it to kill prey. In others, the poisons help them
defend themselves

2. Animals deliver poisons in several ways: biting with fangs, injecting with
stingers or spikes, spitting, or oozing poison from their skin.

Teaching for Processing Strategies:

Revisit vocabulary and Glossary

toxins and venom

Here is a screen shot of the first page of this article that I will be using.



Anneberg Foundation ~  Teaching Reading Grades 3-5

30 minute video of a fifth grade teacher in her classroom teaching summarizing.

Read Write Think

Get the Gist ~ this lesson is geared for grades 6-8 but parts could be adapted to grade 5


  1. John,
    How do you get the digital issues of the Explorer. I get the print edition and would love to have the digital version for the smartboard. Thanks.

  2. John Howell2:24 AM


    I found the digital version of the National Geographic Explorer magazine at the following website.

    Once there, click on the "teacher" tab at the top of the page and you will find the links for the digital copy.

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