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Determining Theme Slideshow

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Help teach 3rd grade, 4th grade, or 5th grade students to practice determining the theme of a story and figure out the difference between main idea and theme. Examples to do together as a class, in small groups, or independently.

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Determining Theme Slideshow

  1. 1. Determining Theme Practice Laura and Clarissa hung out every day after school. Sometimes Clarissa would make fun of Laura. She also would trick her into doing her chores – Clarissa hated cleaning her room, so it was nice that she could get Laura to clean it for her. One day, Laura told Clarissa that she was going to start hanging out with Brittney after school instead. Laura even stopped hanging out with Clarissa at recess. Which theme best fits the story? a. Friends support you even when you make mistakes. b. To have a good friend, you must be a good friend. c. Be kind to your friends and you will be rewarded. d. Friends do whatever it takes to help each other. © 2019 Kalena Baker: Teaching Made Practical. All rights reserved.
  2. 2. Determining Theme Practice When Siljo went out of town, he left his bird with his friend Don. Don was supposed to feed it and make sure it got a chance to fly around everyday. One day, Don forgot that the bird was out of its cage and he opened the front door. Siljo’s bird flew away. Don tried to find it but he couldn’t. Don apologized when Siljo came home. Siljo was sad, but he knew it was an accident and wasn’t mad. a. Friends support you even when you make mistakes. b. To have a good friend, you must be a good friend. c. Be kind to your friends and you will be rewarded. d. Friends do whatever it takes to help each other. Which theme best fits the story? © 2019 Kalena Baker: Teaching Made Practical. All rights reserved.
  3. 3. Determining Theme Practice All of Nala’s friends had a phone, but Nala didn’t. She begged and pleaded with her mom, and finally Nala’s mom bought her one. Nala’s mom told her not to use the phone until they had bought a case for it, but Nala was too excited. She wanted to show her friends. While Nala was taking a selfie with her best friend, she accidently dropped her phone. The screen shattered, and Nala was horrified. Her new phone was already broken. Nala’s mom made her pay $50.00 to fix the screen. When she got the phone back, she wrapped it in a pair of socks and stored it safely until she had bought a case for it. She wasn’t going to risk breaking it again. Learn from your mistakes. Which statement below could be the theme of the passage? Which statement could be the main idea of the passage? Which statement is a detail from the passage? A girl breaks her phone and then decides to keep it safe until she gets a case. Nala wrapped her phone in a pair of socks so it wouldn’t break. © 2019 Kalena Baker: Teaching Made Practical. All rights reserved.
  4. 4. Determining Theme Practice Which of the main idea statements below could be for a story that has the theme “We are stronger together than we are apart.” Hint: There are 3 possible answers. Find all 3! Blake has to finish his homework before he is allowed to play video games. A class works together to stop the school bully. The lone penguin dies from the cold, but the penguins that stayed in a group were able to huddle for warmth. Deion protests an unfair rule. Nobody listens until the whole community gets involved. After waiting patiently all day, the crocodile finally gets a meal. Jessica hides a broken toy so her sister won’t get mad. © 2019 Kalena Baker: Teaching Made Practical. All rights reserved.
  5. 5. Determining Theme Practice Amal and Jake were building a maze using simple machines. They had been working on this project for weeks, and it was due tomorrow. Jake grabbed the lever to make a few adjustments and ended up breaking it in half. Amal was really upset. He had worked hard on that lever. He took a deep breath, reminding himself that Jake had not broken it on purpose. He told Jake not to worry about it. Right now, the theme of this story could be ”Friends forgive each other when they make mistakes.” Change details in the story so that the theme is “If at first you don’t succeed, try again.” © 2019 Kalena Baker: Teaching Made Practical. All rights reserved.
  6. 6. Determining Theme Practice Write a paragraph about a child at home alone with one of the following themes: Do the right thing, even when it is hard. Appearances can be deceiving. Everyone has a place where they belong. Share your story with a partner. See if they can figure out the theme. © 2019 Kalena Baker: Teaching Made Practical. All rights reserved.
  7. 7. You might also like: Teaching Theme So Students Actually Understand Main Idea Slideshow Teaching Summarizing So Students Actually Understand Or, CLICK HERE to buy some low prep activities to help your students understand theme. Graphics by: A Peace of Africa © 2019 Kalena Baker: Teaching Made Practical. All rights reserved.

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