Theme

Description 

Themes are the big ideas that underlie the specifics of a work, subject, time period, event, or other subject of study; they are the unifying concepts upon which details of form and narrative are overlaid. When students identify and analyze theme, they are able to consider how a narrative or a topic connects to broader meaning, and they are able to discover common themes among texts or topics that might otherwise seem unrelated.

Learning Strategies 

  • Determining Importance
  • Synthesizing

Content Areas 

  • ELA
  • Social Studies

Summarizing

Summarizing is an important skill for initial consolidation of information, and for later review. Through the act of summarizing, students process information and make meaning of it as they make decisions about main ideas versus details, and as they restate ideas in their own words. When we teach students a structure and a method for...

Lesson Plan Stages 

  • Investigation
  • Synthesis

Making Meaning

Making Meaning is an activity or procedure where students are given a standardized and consistent set of questions that provides them with the steps to systematically analyze the meaning of various texts. It helps students to break down the task of analysis into manageable chunks. For example: • What do you notice? • What questions do you have...

Lesson Plan Stages 

  • Investigation
  • Reflection
  • Synthesis

QAR

This activity helps students to structure the asking of different types of questions about a text. “QAR” stands for “Question-Answer Relationship,” and it is a way of conceptualizing the different types of questions students may ask about a text. First, questions are divided into “In the Book” QARs and “In Your Head” QARs. “In the Book” QARs...

Lesson Plan Stages 

  • Investigation
  • Reflection