Episode 249: Finally! A Way for Middle Schoolers to Write Effective Summaries - EB Academics

Episode 249: Finally! A Way for Middle Schoolers to Write Effective Summaries

In today’s final episode of the Teaching Middle School ELA podcast, we’re going to tackle a common challenge faced by ELA teachers: helping middle school students write effective summaries. We’ll share a fun and engaging activity that will teach your students how to tidy up their summaries by getting rid of unnecessary details. Plus, we’ll provide practical tips and step-by-step instructions to implement this activity in your classroom. So join us as we sweep away the clutter and empower your students to write concise and organized summaries. 


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[00:00:54] Teaching students how to summarize can be tricky, but in today’s episode, Caitlin and Jessica explore an activity that will help students improve their summarizing skills by eliminating unnecessary details.

[00:06:36] In this activity, students categorize details as essential, inessential, or unsure by placing post-it notes on labeled signs. Essential details are those that are critical to the plot and belong in a short summary. Inessential details are not important for understanding the main points of the story.

[00:07:45] Having discussions about non-essential details can help students better understand a story and help them summarize the details of a story.

[00:12:37] Caitlin and Jessica encourage teachers to consistently use the “SWBST” method for effective summaries, equipping students with skills to focus on more important parts of stories.

Subscribe & Review in iTunes

Are you subscribed to our podcast? If you’re not, we want to encourage you to do that today. We don’t want you to miss a single episode. We add a brand-new episode every week, and if you’re not subscribed, there’s a good chance you’ll miss out on those. Click here to subscribe in iTunes!

Now if you’re feeling extra awesome today, we would be super grateful if you left us a review over on iTunes, too. Those reviews help other people find our podcast, and they’re also so much fun for us to go in and read. Just click here to review by scrolling down our show page, selecting a star rating, and tapping “Write a review.”  Let us know what your favorite part of the podcast is. You’ll receive a free sentence/fragment activity resource. Just screenshot it before submitting it and email it to us at caitlinandjessica@ebacademics.com with the subject line TMSELA Review| Sentence Fragment Activity. Thank you!

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Then, pick the date you’re going to teach it in your classroom, and sit back while you watch as your students show up to your classroom pumped about what the day holds…and gush about your class to their parents on the car ride home!

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