The theme ( author’s message or lesson)

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Fifth Grade Response to Literature Outline

Paragraph 1

  • State the title and author of the piece

  • State a short, clear 3-sentence summary of the story; include only the major events that relate to the theme

  • (GREEN) Use 1 sentence to tell the theme ( author’s message or lesson) of the story (your thesis statement)

Paragraph 2

  • State your interpretation of (Infer!) the story’s message as it applies to everyday life

  • (YELLOW/ concrete details): Support your interpretation with 2 specific TEXTUAL examples (details & events); use at least one direct quotation

  • Explain HOW these textual examples show /prove the story’s message; use your own personal experience & knowledge (& possibly other related reading) to help explain how the supporting story examples & details suggest the message

Paragraph 3

  • (GREEN) Restate the story’s theme in a way that expresses your insight (deep understanding) into the story
  • Sum up the textual details/references in a NEW WAY, and state how they support your interpretation of the theme ( be SURE you connect to & talk about the thesis/message as you stated it in Paragraph #1 !!!

**Essay Pointers

  • DO NOT just retell the story!!

  • Organize essay around the theme/central idea (thesis) with a logical presentation of the 2 supporting details from the story that are clearly explained and connected to the thesis/message!

  • Essay should demonstrate a careful reading & clear understanding of the story’s message

  • Use lively, interesting words (verbs, nouns, & adjectives), sentence variety, transitions, and proper conventions (grammar, punctuation, spelling)

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