Comparing Themes Sort and Printable Activities | Reading Sort with Digital

Grade Levels
4th - 6th
Formats Included
  • PDF
  • Google Apps™
18 + Digital
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Includes Google Apps™
The Teacher-Author indicated this resource includes assets from Google Workspace (e.g. docs, slides, etc.).


This resource includes everything you need for a reading center, small group, or even partner activity for comparing themes.

This resource was created to allow advanced practice in determining themes. This theme sort includes 16 half-page stories and 4 theme header cards. The students will read each story and sort it under the one theme header that it best fits.

This resource is specifically created for comparing stories with the same theme. There are 16 stories and only 4 themes in this activity. Each theme has 4 stories that demonstrate that theme. If you are looking for stories with separate themes, scroll near the bottom of my post to see more Theme resources.

Click here to see more Engaging Reading Centers for Upper Elementary.

This activity will allow students to think carefully about which is the best theme for a story. It also allows them to see how the same theme can be demonstrated through multiple plots.

After the students sort the stories, I have them take the activity a step further with an additional activity. The additional activities are:

1.) Choosing two stories with the same theme and comparing and contrasting them (this can be done several times) - Example response is included so you can use this to model what is expected.

2.) Choosing three stories and writing an additional theme for each story

3.) Choosing two stories with similar plots but different themes to compare and contrast

4.) Choosing a theme and creating a new story that demonstrates that theme

About the Digital Version

The digital version includes the same content as the printable version, but has been redesigned for use in Google Slides. It requires students to use moveable pieces to show the theme of each text. In addition, the digital version includes organizers with text boxes for students to complete the activities after identifying each theme.

For digital access, see pages 3-4 of the PDF.

Need More Theme Resources?

Click here to see my Supplemental Resource for Teaching Theme.

Click here to see my Determining Themes Flipbook.

Click here to see my Determining Themes Puzzle Center.

You may also like:

Making Inferences Activities

Point of View Resources

Comprehending and Analyzing Poetry Resources

Informational Text Structures Resources

Reasons and Evidence Resources

Story Elements Resources

Total Pages
18 + Digital
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
1 Week
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Determine a theme of a story, drama, or poem from details in the text, including how characters in a story or drama respond to challenges or how the speaker in a poem reflects upon a topic; summarize the text.
Determine a theme of a story, drama, or poem from details in the text; summarize the text.


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