Theme for fifth graders! This complete unit teaches fifth grade students how use standards-based strategies to find a theme and explain it in a literary response. First, students analyze characters’ challenges and responses to identify a theme. Then they write a constructed response, including a topic sentence, detail sentences, and conclusion.
• Lesson plans
• Poster with steps for finding and writing about theme
• PowerPoint presentation that models analyzing character responses to find a theme and writing a paragraph to express that theme
• Six one-page stories with corresponding organizers and response sheets suitable for classroom display
• Generic organizer and stationery
• Rubric for constructed response on theme
Click on the PREVIEW button above to take a peek at all that’s included.
1. Direct Instruction – Display and discuss the PowerPoint presentation to show students how to analyze characters’ challenges and responses, translate them into a theme, and write a constructed response. Two examples for “George Washington and His Hatchet” demonstrate how different people might find different themes.
2. Guided Practice – Read “The Miller of Dee” then collaboratively locate and analyze characters’ challenges and responses, find a theme, and write about it.
3. Independent Practice – Find and write about theme for “Cornelia’s Jewels,” “Alexander and Bucephalus,” and “Bruce and the Spider.” (Stories, organizers, and themed response sheets suitable for display are all included.)
4. Assessment – Read “The Endless Tale” and write a literary response to express a theme. (Story, organizer, response sheet, and rubric are included.)
Stories for this unit were adapted from Fifty Famous Stories Retold by James Baldwin, which was published in 1896 and is now in the public domain. Each retells a famous legend, promoting cultural literacy in your class.
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