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Nonfiction Summary Cut Outs #make4dlday

Nonfiction Summary Cut Outs #make4dlday

Written by Sheri Edwards
February 12, 2014

Digital Learning Day Project

Our project evolved from Karen Fasimpaur’s #clmooc  / Educator Innovator “make” idea for paper cut-outs. We adapted it to our nonfiction reading, and we’re excited about our work. Thanks, Karen.

We’ve been reading articles in Junior Scholastic, Scope, and Choices Magazines. We’ve asked good questions, noted our responses, created graphic organizers, written summaries with supporting ideas, and are preparing speeches. For Digital Learning Day, we are creating summary images with cut-out characters. How? Student Directions here.

First students created “gist statements,” statements that summarize their team’s whole article with key words and details.  Next each student sketches, colors simply, and cuts out a character that represents the article. Students then place their cut-out character next to a prop from the classroom (see athlete propped next to books above) to represent a main idea from the article. After snapping that image, students create a slide (We use Keynote, but any slide presentation app will do) that includes the image and their gist statement. They add a headline — a “summary of their summary,” and their source of information. That slide is exported as an image.

Finally students upload their image to their blog, state their source, their gist statement again, and provide a concluding sentence that connects their summary to their cut-out image.

All the discussion within and among teams provides the opportunity for students to clarify the main ideas, consider vocabulary, and deepen their understanding of the topic.

I love the title on this one: “The Day the President and America Were Shot.” This student was sad and focused on the assassination, but thought deeper and realized the article was about the loss in America. It’s this type of thinking that develops when we take the time to USE the information we are learning, to transform the information to make it ours. That’s what projects do, and that’s what this sixth grade student did. He then explained his idea to his team, who accepted the idea and incorporated it into their own slides–one student tutoring others. In addition, this student played around with the formatting to get his image to show what was important. He started out with white slides, but then changed the font of the summary to red to carry over the picture colors. He then changed the background to black to draw out the red. Red blood on a black day. Very powerful. Very 21st Century Skills: Summary Presentation through careful thought and design based on facts and analysis.

For more information:

Teacher Model

Student Directions here.

Student Blogs  — Please view and leave comments!

Teacher Original Reflection

How have you developed deeper learning through projects that include transfer of information?


CCSS Goals

___  RI Cite Evidence
___  RI 2 Determine main idea/supporting details; Write objective summary
___  W8 Quote or paraphrase the data and/or conclusions
___  W9b Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research. Apply reading standards to nonfiction.
___  W5 With some guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach, focusing on how well purpose and audience have been addressed. (Editing for conventions)
___  W6 Produce and Publish writing; cite sources



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