Saturday, October 21, 2023

Summary and Theme A Free Unit for Grades 5-6

Summary and Theme A Free Unit for Grades 5-6

 Want more free ELA resources for this grade? Check out my ELA page here!

Writing about a book's theme can seem like a daunting task for most kids in this age group. Breaking down how an author is writing to their audience and what theme or lesson they want to get across is a big concept. The key to teaching it to fifth and sixth graders? Breaking it down step-by-step.

In this free printable unit, your learners will write a short summary and summarize the theme of a story using text evidence and their own thoughts.

The unit follows the story 'After the Fall' by Dan Santat, a story about Humpty Dumpty and how he braves climbing the wall once again after his fall. You can use the book itself, or listen to the story read aloud on Youtube. Either way it's a great book to start with that could give your students  few different themes to work with. 

They will start by writing a quick summary using SWBST method (Somebody Wanted But So Then). They'll then flesh out their summaries a bit into a small paragraph. 

Next, students will learn what the theme of a story IS. They'll listen to some common story themes, think up some themes from books or movies, and finally work as a group to come up with quick story ideas for different themes.

You'll then have them write a short paragraph using sentence stems provided on posters to write about the theme of the mentor text, After the Fall.

Finally, they will put it all together into a short essay that includes a quick summary of the story and a paragraph about the theme. I've included excerpts from the story that can be used as text evidence, as well as checklists students can use to be sure they've included everything in their papers.

The 5 lesson plans in the unit guide you through teaching all of this, and make planning a breeze too!

Download The Free Unit Below

You can download this unit by clicking on the link below. 

**You may use and distribute this product for FREE in your homeschool, classroom, or school, but you MUST leave my website name as it is on each page ( If you'd like to share the digital file directly, please direct people to this blog page and not the Google Drive link. You may NOT sell this unit or redistribute it for a profit. Thanks!**