Friday, 21 November 2014

Summary and Paraphrasing Writing Lesson Activities.


I have just finished a section of lessons on writing a summary and paraphrasing. Like in my autobiography writing lesson it was based around a section from the book which required me to come up with many supplementary activities. Here are some of them!





Paraphrasing Activities.

Matching Quotes With Their Paraphrased Meaning.

This activity was adapted from Andrea Jesse's lesson which can be found here.

On the attached worksheet I wrote ten famous quotes and paraphrased each one. Cut out each sentence and give each group in you class a set of cut out sentences. The students then have to match the paraphrased sentence with the original quote.

This then leads into this activity..

Paraphrasing Quotes.

With the classroom split into groups I showed the students a famous quote in the board. I then gave the students three minutes to think of as many ways to paraphrase the quote as possible. The group that came up with the most correct sentences won a point.

Putting Paraphrased Song Lyrics in Order.

For this activity I put the lyrics to the One Direction Song "What Makes You Beautiful" on the board. I then wrote out some lyrics with each line paraphrased. I cut out each line individually and gave them to each group. The students then had to put the paraphrased lyrics in the correct order.

Paraphrasing Review Game.

First put the students in groups. One student from each group should stand at the front of the table facing away from the board. Put a word/sentence on the board. The students who are sat down should try to paraphrase the sentence so that the students standing up can guess what the sentence/word is. When the student standing up has the correct answer they should raise their hand. The first group to raise their hand gets one point.

Summarising Activities.

Summarising a Movie Activity

After explaining to the class what a summary is, I asked each group to think of a movie and summarise it in five sentences. They then had to read their summary and the other groups try to guess the movie.

Summarising a Movie Game

Each student should write down the name of their favourite movie on a piece of paper. Tell the students to fold their paper and collect them all in a cup/bag.

With your class in teams, the first team should come to the front of the class. One person will be the reader. The reader has to pick a movie from the cup and summarise the movie. The other members of the group have to guess the movie. Each group in the class will be given one minute to guess as many as possible with the team that gets the most being the winner. To keep the game useful I use these extra rules:

  • The speaker cannot mention characters, actors or any word in the title.'
  • No actions.
  • They can pass if they don't know the movie.


Writing a Summary of a Short Film

First show the class a short movie and ask them to write down the five most important points. I used the movie from this lesson.

After each group has five important points, go through the movie and explain any bits they are unsure of. The students should then write a short summary of what happened in the movie. You will probably have to teach the students some example sentence structures they can use to get them started. In my (pretty high level) class, providing examples gave a bit of structure for the weaker students and allowed them to complete the activity. These are the sentences I used:


  • In the beginning.....................
  • And then ................................
  • The girl ..................................
  • After that ................................
  • At the end ..............................










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