Themes in Literature for 4th and 5th Grades Print and Digital

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This Theme unit includes print and digital formats with lots of fun fables, folktales, and even a myth!


Products Included in This Bundle:


Looking for a way to help your students truly understand how to find the theme of a story? This print and digital unit can help! It’s packed with lots of targeted theme practice with everything you need to teach students how to identify the theme of a piece of fiction. It includes a variety of activities with 7 passages including Aesop’s Fables, Folktales from Around the World, Legends and a Myth. It also has a set of 32 task cards, handouts, graphic organizers, a picture book list, and 21 theme posters.


It includes: (print and digital)
7 Literature Passages (double sided with questions and keys):
The Golden Goose and the Milkmaid – Paired Aesop’s Fables
Impossible – Paired Aesop’s Fables
It Could Always Be Worse – Jewish Folktale
The Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing and Wolf Poetry – Paired Passages
The Wise Old Owl – Native American Legend
Anansi and the Wisdom Pot – Folktale from West Africa
Pandora’s Box – Greek Myth

32 Task Cards (and a student record sheet and key)
21 Theme Posters
4 Anchor Charts
10 Graphic Organizers
Mentor Book List for Themes
Elements of a Fairy Tale Handout (Fairy Tales have strong themes)
Writing Page for Fairy Tales
Elements of a Fable Handout (Fables usually have easily identifiable themes)
Writing Page for Fables
Teacher Notes PDF with LINKS


SAVE MORE and GET MORE with the Reading Bundle for 4th and 5th Grade!!! (Click Here) It has 10 key reading units which cover many 4th and 5th reading standards!


Here are the units included in the Reading Bundle for 4th and 5th Grade!
Main Idea
Characters, Settings, and Events: Story Elements
Compare and Contrast
Elements of Poetry, Drama, and Prose
Text Evidence
Inferences Using Informational Text
Inferences Using Literature
Cause and Effect
Informational Text Structures


Why you’ll love this resource:

  • It includes theme passages which are high-interest ones your students will enjoy, like Anansi and the Wisdom Pot!
  • It comes in a digital format that works well in the classroom, for homeschool, and for distance learning.
  • Some of the passages are short paired texts on a single page.
  • There are a variety of formats included from passages, to posters, task cards, a mentor text list, graphic organizers, writing pages, and more!
  • The theme posters allow you to chart the themes of books you read as a class (or individually) for the whole year, allowing you to spiral learning!
  • The task cards have 32 mini-passages which are lots of fun and have a variety of themes!
  • The printables are low prep for busy teachers!
  • It may be used in a number of ways from guided reading, to reader’s workshop, independent work, literacy centers, exit slips, homework, whole class games, test prep, and more!!!



Want more theme materials? I also have two digital reading units for Theme that have completely original content. These paperless units are created for Google Slides™ with moveable drag and drop pieces. They also work in OneNote if you open the Google Slides™ file as a PowerPoint. Students really love these!
4th Grade Digital Reading Unit: Theme for Google Slides™
5th Grade Digital Reading Unit: Theme for Google Slides™


Also, I do want to suggest a great set of reading centers that would go well with this reading unit. There is a game for EACH READING STANDARD!!! It comes in a set of 10 for fiction, a set of 10 for nonfiction, or a bundle of 20 reading centers specifically for 4th and 5th grades!
10 Fiction Reading Centers
10 Nonfiction Reading Centers
20 Reading Centers – Yearlong Bundle


Here are some reading games related to theme:
Themes of Stories Center
Themes in Drama and Poetry Center
Central Message: Moral Center
Central Message Using Traditional Literature Center



©The Teacher Next Door™
Purchasing this product grants permission for use by one teacher in his or her own classroom or for one homeschool parent teaching his/her child. If you would like to share with others, please purchase additional licenses.

This resource may only be placed on a password-protected website for your students, like Google Classroom™. It may not be placed anywhere else on the internet, on a class or school website visible to the public, or on a district server. Please email me if you have any questions: [email protected].


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