Synthesizing is very closely linked to determining importance. As we determine what is most important about the text, we begin to interweave our own thoughts about the text. For students to synthesize, they reflect on the text, combine new information with their own knowledge, and create new ideas and opinions about the text. Synthesizing is very much like putting together a puzzle so we see the whole picture. When we synthesize we get a complete picture of what the author want us to know and understand. Through synthesis a student gains personal understanding of the text.

When a student synthesizes text, he define his beliefs and defends his thinking with evidence, generating individual insights about the text.

Image reposted from One Extra Degree Blog Spot

Questions to Reveal Thinking:

  • How has your thinking changed after reading this passage/text?

  • Can you combine new information from the text you have read with your new ideas and form an opinion about what the text is about? Can you defend it?

  • What is the main idea about the text? Do you think the author was for or against this idea? How do you know? Can you find examples from the text to support the author's opinion?

  • Now that you've combined your thinking, background knowledge, and a summary of the text, how did it help you to understand the text? Did you create new ideas about what you read?

Language for Synthesizing Text:

  • I think the text is about (form an opinion) . . .

  • My thinking changed after I read . . .

  • After reading ______, now I think . . .

  • The author's purpose for writing the text was _______, because . . .

Books for Teaching Synthesizing:

  • Mr. Peabody's Apples by Madonna

  • Leah's Pony by Elizabeth Friedrich

  • Mirette on the High Wire by Emily Arnold McCully

  • All the Places to Love by Patricia MacLachlan

  • The Rag Coat by Lauren Mills

  • The Wednesday Surprise by Eve Bunting

  • Fly Away Home by Eve Bunting

  • Someday a Tree by Eve Bunting

  • A Day's Work by Eve Bunting

  • Smoky Night by Eve Bunting

  • Fireflies by Julie Brinckloe

  • Grandfather Twilight by Barbara Berger

  • The Royal Bee by Frances Park & Ginger Park

  • The Little House by Virginia Lee Burton

  • William's Doll by Charlotte Zolotow

  • The Great Kapok Tree by Lynne Cherry

  • Tight Times by Barbara Shook Hazen

  • Wilfrid Gordon McDonald Partridge by Mem Fox

  • Gettin' Through Thursday by Melrose Cooper

  • Greyling by Jane Yolen

  • The Memory String by Eve Bunting

Files for Synthesizing

 Trade Books for Synthesizing (Reading Lady)

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Synthesizing Poster (Oxford Elementary)

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Synthesizing Graphic Organizer

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Synthesizing Wheel Graphic Organizer

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Synthesizing Self Selected Reading

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Monitoring for Meaning (Bubbles)

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Monitoring for Meaning (Tracking Thinking)

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Synthesizing the Main Idea - - - -

What's the Big Idea - - - -

Tracking My Thinking - - - -

Mini Lesson (Synthesizing w/ Nesting Dolls) - - - -

Anchor Chart: Synthesizing (Vickie Moore) - - - -

Anchor Chart: Synthesizing (Accidental Teaching) - - - -

Anchor Chart: Synthesizing with The Wenesday
Surprise (Reading is Thinking Blog Spot)
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Anchor Chart: Synthesizing with Smokey Night
(Reading is Thinking Blog Spot)
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