Last week, my eighth graders were reading a short story and I was teaching them about an easy guide to use when summarizing a story. You use the model of “Somebody Wanted But So.” For example, to summarize Romeo and Juliet, you’d say, “Romeo and Juliet wanted to be together but their families were at war so they killed themselves.” After we read the short story, I had students write down their one-sentence summaries and then asked some to share theirs. One of my students had the Somebody part correct, the Wanted part correct, and the So part correct. However, the detail he provided for the But was not quite what it should have been.
I said, “Well, your but’s a little shaky… Wait. That did NOT come out right.”
My students got a good laugh out of it.