6. How do I know which summarizing strategy is the best to use?
Summarization is the second most effective strategy that increases student achievement. The key component to this is that the student must summarize the lesson. Traditional teacher prep programs instruct that teachers should summarize for the students. This is not best practice. Why would a teacher summarize a lesson? Teachers already know the content. Research indicates that students will learn it faster and keep it longer if they complete the summarization activity.
To decide which summarizing stratgies are best to use, teachers should look at the varying needs of their students and facility to make that decision. The goal here is to have students generate a written summary. However, you may need to begin with an oral summary or one where a student draws a picture, depending on the level of learning in your classroom. Once you have established the expectation of student summarization, you can begin to move students towards writing when appropriate.
It is also important to note that the summarization activities provided in our Learning-Focused manual are merely suggestions. Be creative and seek our other ways to summarize!