Posts Tagged “reading groups”

Learning Intention: We are learning to identify the theme of the books we read.

Here are some of the most common themes found in non fiction books.















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Watch these two videos that discuss the common themes of literary texts and some of the lessons that the characters and readers learn along the way. 



Visit this site to make a word cloud of all the themes you know are in stories and texts! Save your word cloud to the desktop and include your names as the title.


Finished early? Write a comment telling me a book you know that has one of the 12 most common themes.

Set out your comment like this:

Hi Miss B,

Theme: Courage

Text: Sebby Stee, the Garbos and Me

Evidence: Mikey tries to be brave when he ventures out with his older brother to steal the garbo’s beer. He also shows courage when he eventually stands up to his older brother.

From Bosco



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Every book we read has a theme,  sometimes more than one! But what is the theme?

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The ‘theme’ is the message that the author is trying to communicate with the reader.

Authors use clues to show us the theme, so we need to be able to infer the underlying messages and topics.


Some people might confuse theme with the plot of a story. But the plot of story refers to something to what the author is actually writing about. The plot of the story includes the characters, the setting, the events—these are things that are stated in the text.

Beneath the novel’s surface lies its true meaning, or its theme.  A  theme usually relates to the author’s statement or opinion on the topic. It’s an idea that connects the whole story.

Usually the theme of the story can be inferred from the characters themselves. The character’s thoughts, feelings and emotions, reflections and discoveries. What they learn throughout their experiences can give the readers an idea of the theme running throughout the story.

For instance, the plot of Harry Potter is based on the Wizarding World and his time at Hogwarts throughout his teenage years. But the story itself has many themes—friendship, love, sacrifice, good versus evil.

Fairy tales and fables often have obvious themes with a matching life lesson or moral. In Aesop’s fable “The Hare and The Tortoise”, the moral of the story is ‘Slow and Steady Wins the Race’. The ‘theme’ of  ”The Hare and The Tortoise” is PERSISTENCE. 

Don’t know the  ”The Hare and The Tortoise” fable? Click here to go read it!


Here are some other of Aesop’s Fables for you to go and watch / read.

Can you work out the moral of the story and the theme? 


The Dog and the Wolf

The Wind and the Sun

The Eagle and the Arrow

The Lion and The Mouse

The Hare with Many Friends

A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing

The Ant and the Grasshopper


What books have you read that have a theme? What were the themes in your books? Leave a comment and let us know!

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Our focus strategy this week is Making Inferences.




Authors use inference to SHOW their readers more information about the setting ( eg: weather, mood) and the characters (opinions, emotions).



Let’s practice the skill of inferring.


1. Click HERE to guess words and phrases based on clues.


2. Click HERE to play a game using inferring.


3.  Click HERE to play Making Inferences Battleships!

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Being a fluent reader means you read smoothly with expression and correct

phrasing. You read at a suitable pace, paying attention to punctuation


In 5/6J – on average you should be reading between 100 and 130 words per minute aloud, and even more if

you read silently.


Multiply your age by 10, that gives you an indication of your oral reading rate of words per minute. 


Today we will test your silent reading skill. The texts are quite hard, aimed at high school students.

The aim is not to read too fast that you can’t remember anything you just read. After the

test you will be asked some comprehension questions!


Click the link below to go to the reading speed tester. You can read more than one text, when you

start again you get a different text. 


Click here to find your score!





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Our focus strategy at the moment is learning to form a synthesis. 

Poster - Synthesising

Synthesising is one of the hardest comprehension skills because to do it you need to ask

questions, infer, make connections, use your background knowledge and summarise!  


Our reading groups tasks this week is to form a synthesis on our much-loved book

“Poppy Comes Home”.

Use the planning page to help you fill out the Story cube at Cube Creator.

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This term we have been looking at Information Reports. We have discovered that information reports feature

facts grouped together into categories. 


Information reports feature a lot of technical language. Technical language is words and phrases specific to

the topic that are not used very often in everyday conversation. 


This week in reading groups we will be reading a text at called ‘How Do Plants and

Animals Survive in the Desert’. Let’s see if this information report has lots of technical language or just topic



Click the image below to visit and click on your set tasks to see this report. 

how do animals survive in the desert

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This week we are looking at how animals adapt in the desert. We will be doing an experiment and also reading some facts about these desert survivors.  

When we read factual texts our brains are constantly coding what is important, what is interesting and what is not relevant. 

To work out what it is important, or to find the main idea, we have to be looking for the facts and information we think is the most important to tell someone else who has not studied that topic.

If you could tell them ONLY three things about what you have read – what would it be?

Sometimes, the text we read shows us the most important facts by putting them in boxes or by making the font bold, italic or underlined.

This page is a perfect example of that. 

 Other pages might make different words and phrases stand out, but they might no necessarily be the most important fact.

In reading groups this week 5/6J, See if you can sort out what is important and what is interesting on these pages:

Start here and find the three most important facts to record on your T chart, along with 3 things that are just interesting. 

If you have time click here, here and here, recording your 3 important and 3 interesting facts each time. 

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This fortnight we are learning to

determine the most important

details and events in the texts that we read. 




Click here to practice this skill! 


Still have time? Here’s something that explains it – especially for Factual Texts.

Thanks Tim and Moby!


You may have time to do the quiz and activities too. 

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Learning Intention: We are learning to Make Inferences so we figure out exactly what the author is trying to say.

Today you need to log in to the student’s area of this site. The password is on the board.

You need to drag the magnifying glass into the book. Complete the following 3 tasks:

A) Listen to the introduction

B) Watch the video

C) Complete the activity

If you finish early, drag the question mark into the book and complete the activities on Questioning!

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This week our focus strategy is on MAKING INFERENCES.

Firstly, CLICK HERE to read what making inferences means and test out your skills. Read the story about Pete and Patti and then click the flower (you’ll know what I mean when you visit this site).

Next, you need to visit THIS SITE to play an inference game. How many clues did you need before you could guess? The lesser then better!

Still have time? Master the skill at these extra sites.

Wow, still have time? Log in and write a comment and tell us:

Why does making inferences help when reading?

What do you need to do to make an inference?

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