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Summarise Ideas From a Paragraph

In this worksheet, students will be asked to summarise main ideas from a paragraph. An important skill in Year 6 is to be able to summarise key information into a few well-structured sentences.

'Summarise Ideas From a Paragraph' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 2

Curriculum topic:   Reading: Comprehension

Curriculum subtopic:   Identify and Summarise Main Ideas

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

In this activity, you will practice how to write a summary from a paragraph. 

A good summary will give the reader all of the information they need without the extra, unnecessary detail.

A summary is much shorter than the original piece of writing.

 

The crucial information includes the 5 W's:

What

Where

When

Why 

Who

The summary needs to take the form of a well-structured paragraph.

Think of this paragraph as a sandwich.

The top piece of bread is the topic sentence that introduces what the paragraph is about.

The filling is the supporting sentences that add detail to the topic sentence.

The bottom piece of bread is the ending sentence which concludes or closes the paragraph.

'The High King of Ireland was at his wits end. 

His face looked as if it had been carved from granite as he stared moodily at the long line of his subjects queuing up outside his palace to demand his time.

His people were furious and with good reason, what was he going to tell them this time?'

 

Can you choose the option that most accurately summarises the paragraph?

The King of Ireland wants to invade the neighbouring land

The King of Ireland was old and frail

The Kind of Ireland was moody because he wasn't well

The King of Ireland is feeling fretful because he doesn't know how to appease his people

'The subjects of the King of Ireland were furious because once again their land was overthrown by locusts.

This meant another terrible harvest, from which there would be nothing to eat, there was more famine and poverty ahead.

"You must, must do something Sire!" exclaimed one woman.

"I know," replied the King, "I have just the woman for the job".'

 

Can you choose the option that most accurately summarises the paragraph?

A woman would help fix the issue

To help solve the problem of the devastating locusts, the King of Ireland had found a woman to help

The King was praying to the Gods for help to solve the issue

To help solve the problem of the devastating locusts, the King of Ireland had found a locus-eating frog to help

'At that very moment, a tall, beautiful woman walked into the room. She wore a long, white flowing robe and her eyes were the colour of the Irish sea on a stormy day.

She carried a long, wooden stick, one would be forgiven for assuming it to be a wand.

"My name is Aurora and I have come to solve the problem of your ferocious locusts", declared the mysterious woman.

"I will use my wand and heavenly powers to rid you of your terrible curse", she continued.

The King of Ireland and his subjects exchanged glances, they had tried everything to destroy the locusts, could this strange woman truly do it with her magic?'

 

From reading this paragraph carefully, can you write a topic sentence about it below? 

 

Remember a topic sentence introduces what the paragraph is about.

'At that very moment, a tall, beautiful woman walked into the room. She wore a long, white flowing robe and her eyes were the colour of the Irish sea on a stormy day.

She carried a long, wooden stick, one would be forgiven for assuming it to be a wand.

"My name is Aurora and I have come to solve the problem of your ferocious locusts", declared the mysterious woman.

"I will use my wand and heavenly powers to rid you of your terrible curse", she continued.

The King of Ireland and his subjects exchanged glances, they had tried everything to destroy the locusts, could this strange woman truly do it with her magic?!'

 

From reading this paragraph carefully, can you write two supporting sentences for it below? 

 

Remember supporting sentences add extra detail to the topic sentence (the filling of the sandwich!)

'At that very moment, a tall, beautiful woman walked into the room. She wore a long, white flowing robe and her eyes were the colour of the Irish sea on a stormy day.

She carried a long, wooden stick, one would be forgiven for assuming it to be a wand.

"My name is Aurora and I have come to solve the problem of your ferocious locusts", declared the mysterious woman.

"I will use my wand and heavenly powers to rid you of your terrible curse", she continued.

The King of Ireland and his subjects exchanged glances, they had tried everything to destroy the locusts, could this strange woman truly do it with her magic?!'

 

From reading this paragraph carefully, can you write an ending sentence for it below? 

 

Remember an ending sentence concludes or closes the paragraph.

What is an X-Ray?

An X-Ray is an extremely clever form of electromagnetic radiation with a small wavelength; it is so small that it cannot be seen by the human eye.

The wavelength is so minute that it can pass through some solid objects but not all, this depends on how dense the object is.

X-Rays were invented by an incredibly talented man, Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen in 1895. During a scientific experiment, he noticed the 'unknown' energy and therefore named it 'X-radiation'.

For his very important discovery, Roentgen was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1901.

 

Read the sentences below that summarise this paragraph and place them into chronological in order to create an overall summary.

Column A

Column B

Topic sentence =
An X-Ray is very small, it can pass through most, ...
Supporting sentences =
An X-Ray is an impressive form of electromagnetic ...
Ending sentence =
Roentgen was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physics i...

What is an X-Ray?

 

An X-Ray is an extremely clever form of electromagnetic radiation with a small wavelength; it is so small that it cannot be seen by the human eye.

The wavelength is so minute that it can pass through some solid objects but not all, that does depend on how dense the object is.

X-Rays were invented by an incredibly talented man, Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen in 1895. During a scientific experiment, he noticed the 'unknown' energy and therefore named it 'X-radiation'.

For his very important discovery, Roentgen was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1901.

 

Can you choose the sentence below that offers the best summary of Roentgen's career?

Roentgen carried many important scientific experiments

Roentgen is an extremely famous scientist who invented X-rays, for his work, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize

Roentgen won the Nobel Prize in Physics

Read the summary about the country of Cuba below carefully.

 

The official name for Cuba is the Republic of Cuba. In Spanish it is known as Republicia de Cuba. It consists of the Island of Cuba, the Isle of Youth and some adjacent small islands. The Island of Cuba is the largest of the Greater Antilles. Cuba is the most populated country in the whole of the Caribbean. The main island of Cuba consists of rolling plains. It has a range of steep mountains at its southeast end, called the Sierra Maestra. Cuba is a well-known island in the Caribbean.

 

Can you match each section of the summary with its correct detail?

Column A

Column B

Topic sentence =
Comment regarding the popularity of Cuba
Supporting sentences =
The countries and landscape that make Cuba up
Ending sentence =
Description of the name of Cuba

Read this summary about Cuba's economy carefully.

 

Cuba has a state-controlled economy. The major means of production are controlled by the government. Most of the labour force is employed by the state. The private sector is just starting out. The main industries in Cuba are the petroleum, tobacco, nickel, cement, steel, agricultural machinery, pharmaceuticals and the sugar industries. Cuba's major agricultural products are tobacco, citrus, rice, potatoes, beans, livestock and sugar. The currency of Cuba is the Cuban Peso (CUP).

 

Which option below is the topic sentence for this summary?

Cuba has a state-controlled economy

The private sector is just starting out

The currency of Cuba is the Cuban Peso

Most of the labour force is employed by the state

Now, read this summary on Cuban tourism.

 

Tourism in Cuba attracts over two million people a year, and is one of the main sources of revenue for the island. With its favourable climate, beaches, colonial architecture and distinct cultural history, Cuba has long been an attractive destination for tourists. Cuba boasts a tropical climate, making it a favourite for sun worshippers.

 

In the box below, can you type the ending sentence of the summary?

Cuba boasts a tropical climate, making it a favourite for sun worshippers

Tourism in Cuba attracts over two million people a year, and is one of the main sources of revenue for the island

  • Question 1

'The High King of Ireland was at his wits end. 

His face looked as if it had been carved from granite as he stared moodily at the long line of his subjects queuing up outside his palace to demand his time.

His people were furious and with good reason, what was he going to tell them this time?'

 

Can you choose the option that most accurately summarises the paragraph?

CORRECT ANSWER
The King of Ireland is feeling fretful because he doesn't know how to appease his people
EDDIE SAYS
This paragraph describes the King of Ireland as feeling fretful because his people are angry, he is unsure how to appease them.
  • Question 2

'The subjects of the King of Ireland were furious because once again their land was overthrown by locusts.

This meant another terrible harvest, from which there would be nothing to eat, there was more famine and poverty ahead.

"You must, must do something Sire!" exclaimed one woman.

"I know," replied the King, "I have just the woman for the job".'

 

Can you choose the option that most accurately summarises the paragraph?

CORRECT ANSWER
To help solve the problem of the devastating locusts, the King of Ireland had found a woman to help
EDDIE SAYS
The most succinct and effective option that accurately summarises the paragraph is: 'To help solve the problem of the devastating locusts, the King of Ireland had found a woman to help'.
  • Question 3

'At that very moment, a tall, beautiful woman walked into the room. She wore a long, white flowing robe and her eyes were the colour of the Irish sea on a stormy day.

She carried a long, wooden stick, one would be forgiven for assuming it to be a wand.

"My name is Aurora and I have come to solve the problem of your ferocious locusts", declared the mysterious woman.

"I will use my wand and heavenly powers to rid you of your terrible curse", she continued.

The King of Ireland and his subjects exchanged glances, they had tried everything to destroy the locusts, could this strange woman truly do it with her magic?'

 

From reading this paragraph carefully, can you write a topic sentence about it below? 

 

Remember a topic sentence introduces what the paragraph is about.

CORRECT ANSWER
EDDIE SAYS
The topic sentence is an opening sentence for the summary briefly describing what the paragraph is about. For example: A tall, mysterious woman suddenly entered the room. (We do not need to include all of the extra information regarding the details of her appearance.)
  • Question 4

'At that very moment, a tall, beautiful woman walked into the room. She wore a long, white flowing robe and her eyes were the colour of the Irish sea on a stormy day.

She carried a long, wooden stick, one would be forgiven for assuming it to be a wand.

"My name is Aurora and I have come to solve the problem of your ferocious locusts", declared the mysterious woman.

"I will use my wand and heavenly powers to rid you of your terrible curse", she continued.

The King of Ireland and his subjects exchanged glances, they had tried everything to destroy the locusts, could this strange woman truly do it with her magic?!'

 

From reading this paragraph carefully, can you write two supporting sentences for it below? 

 

Remember supporting sentences add extra detail to the topic sentence (the filling of the sandwich!)

CORRECT ANSWER
EDDIE SAYS
The supporting sentences add meat to the paragraph. For example: Aurora was a tall, mysterious woman who carried a magical wand. She claimed to have mystical, heavenly sent powers that could rid the Irish of the locusts.
  • Question 5

'At that very moment, a tall, beautiful woman walked into the room. She wore a long, white flowing robe and her eyes were the colour of the Irish sea on a stormy day.

She carried a long, wooden stick, one would be forgiven for assuming it to be a wand.

"My name is Aurora and I have come to solve the problem of your ferocious locusts", declared the mysterious woman.

"I will use my wand and heavenly powers to rid you of your terrible curse", she continued.

The King of Ireland and his subjects exchanged glances, they had tried everything to destroy the locusts, could this strange woman truly do it with her magic?!'

 

From reading this paragraph carefully, can you write an ending sentence for it below? 

 

Remember an ending sentence concludes or closes the paragraph.

CORRECT ANSWER
EDDIE SAYS
The ending sentence closes the paragraph. For example: The King of Ireland and his people seemed doubtful that the woman could destroy the locusts.
  • Question 6

What is an X-Ray?

An X-Ray is an extremely clever form of electromagnetic radiation with a small wavelength; it is so small that it cannot be seen by the human eye.

The wavelength is so minute that it can pass through some solid objects but not all, this depends on how dense the object is.

X-Rays were invented by an incredibly talented man, Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen in 1895. During a scientific experiment, he noticed the 'unknown' energy and therefore named it 'X-radiation'.

For his very important discovery, Roentgen was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1901.

 

Read the sentences below that summarise this paragraph and place them into chronological in order to create an overall summary.

CORRECT ANSWER

Column A

Column B

Topic sentence =
An X-Ray is an impressive form of...
Supporting sentences =
An X-Ray is very small, it can pa...
Ending sentence =
Roentgen was awarded the Nobel Pr...
EDDIE SAYS
How did you find this one? Remember the idea of creating a sandwich when summarising: Topic sentence, supporting sentences and ending sentence.
  • Question 7

What is an X-Ray?

 

An X-Ray is an extremely clever form of electromagnetic radiation with a small wavelength; it is so small that it cannot be seen by the human eye.

The wavelength is so minute that it can pass through some solid objects but not all, that does depend on how dense the object is.

X-Rays were invented by an incredibly talented man, Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen in 1895. During a scientific experiment, he noticed the 'unknown' energy and therefore named it 'X-radiation'.

For his very important discovery, Roentgen was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1901.

 

Can you choose the sentence below that offers the best summary of Roentgen's career?

CORRECT ANSWER
Roentgen is an extremely famous scientist who invented X-rays, for his work, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize
EDDIE SAYS
How did you get on this time? Option two offered the most complete and effective summary of Roentgen's career because it describes his famous discovery and the recognition he received for it.
  • Question 8

Read the summary about the country of Cuba below carefully.

 

The official name for Cuba is the Republic of Cuba. In Spanish it is known as Republicia de Cuba. It consists of the Island of Cuba, the Isle of Youth and some adjacent small islands. The Island of Cuba is the largest of the Greater Antilles. Cuba is the most populated country in the whole of the Caribbean. The main island of Cuba consists of rolling plains. It has a range of steep mountains at its southeast end, called the Sierra Maestra. Cuba is a well-known island in the Caribbean.

 

Can you match each section of the summary with its correct detail?

CORRECT ANSWER

Column A

Column B

Topic sentence =
Description of the name of Cuba
Supporting sentences =
The countries and landscape that ...
Ending sentence =
Comment regarding the popularity ...
EDDIE SAYS
Did you remember that the summary needs to take the form of a well-structured paragraph? Think of this paragraph as a sandwich! The top piece of bread is the topic sentence and introduces what the paragraph is about. The filling is the supporting sentences and adds detail to the topic sentence. The bottom piece of bread is the ending sentence and concludes or closes the paragraph.
  • Question 9

Read this summary about Cuba's economy carefully.

 

Cuba has a state-controlled economy. The major means of production are controlled by the government. Most of the labour force is employed by the state. The private sector is just starting out. The main industries in Cuba are the petroleum, tobacco, nickel, cement, steel, agricultural machinery, pharmaceuticals and the sugar industries. Cuba's major agricultural products are tobacco, citrus, rice, potatoes, beans, livestock and sugar. The currency of Cuba is the Cuban Peso (CUP).

 

Which option below is the topic sentence for this summary?

CORRECT ANSWER
Cuba has a state-controlled economy
EDDIE SAYS
The topic sentence of this summary is short but effective, it is: 'Cuba has a state-controlled economy'. From, this we know the detail that follows will tell us all about the Cuban economy.
  • Question 10

Now, read this summary on Cuban tourism.

 

Tourism in Cuba attracts over two million people a year, and is one of the main sources of revenue for the island. With its favourable climate, beaches, colonial architecture and distinct cultural history, Cuba has long been an attractive destination for tourists. Cuba boasts a tropical climate, making it a favourite for sun worshippers.

 

In the box below, can you type the ending sentence of the summary?

CORRECT ANSWER
Cuba boasts a tropical climate, making it a favourite for sun worshippers
EDDIE SAYS
The ending sentence of a summary provides closure for the paragraph. The ending sentence for this summary is: 'Cuba boasts a tropical climate, making it a favourite for sun worshippers.' Great work, you've completed another activity! How about attempting another one so you feel super confident?
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