School Improvement in Maryland

Using the State Curriculum: Reading/ELA, Grade 5

Reading/ELA | Informational | Literary | Writing | Language | Listening | Speaking

Lesson Seeds: The lesson seeds are ideas for the indicator/objective that can be used to build a lesson. Lesson seeds are not meant to be all-inclusive, nor are they substitutes for instruction.

Standard 1.0 General Reading Processes

Topic E. General Reading Comprehension

Indicator 3. Use strategies to make meaning from text (during reading)

Objective f. Periodically summarize while reading

Teacher Note

All summarizing done as a during- reading strategy should be mostly oral and have as little writing as possible.


This strategy called “Say Something” is from Kylene Beers’s work. The teacher should place each student with a partner. The partners are both reading the same text and should agree which portion of text they are going to read. After both students have read silently, they stop at the agreed concluding point. Based upon a previous agreement, one student will ask the other to say something. The student who will respond should summarize what has just been read. This activity should rotate between the two readers so that each student has the chance to summarize. If summarizing is impossible, that student should realize that comprehension is lacking and rereading or reading aloud with the partner is needed. During the activity, the teacher should rotate among the reading partners to make certain that students actually summarize and do not retell the portion of text.


The teacher should assign a portion of text for independent student reading. Students should also be provided a set of bookmarks, which are covered so that they can be written upon and then erased. The teacher should tell students that the purpose of this reading is for students to determine which spots within the text should be stopping places for a review or summary of what has just been read. Students should read and mark the stopping/summarizing points with a bookmark. Once students have completed their reading, they and the teacher should discuss what spots they chose for summarizing and why these spots were chosen.