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What is the theme of your paper?  The theme is the message your words send to your reader. What main idea and attitude will your readers picture from your words?


Your words are your paintbrush: paint a picture that moves your movie from your mind to the reader's mind.

 How To Set Your Theme


  1. Writers write what they know about, so first do a six minute pre-write on your topic.
  2. Next, re-read your writing: what message shines through that stands out as your main idea and attitude about your topic? Remember that THEME is not TOPIC or SUBJECT: it is message and attitude.  Take notes:
    • Write your theme in a sentence.
    • Write three more details that fit your theme and make it come alive.
    • Think of and write a simile that compares your topic to something that matches your theme.
  3. Re-write your ideas in a revised, detailed and themed paragraph.



Enjoy a few examples.



Prompt: John Glenn



What did John Glenn see and feel on February 20th, 1962 while orbitting the earth?




1. Grade 5


John Glenn felt uncomfortable.  He felt like a moose on a city bus, and saw the prettiest glowing marshmellows far out in the distance.  He noticed the biggest ball of cheese ever, and that bright orange! Wow! That really made him hungry. 


He enjoyed looking at those marshmellows until he remembered he was thousands of miles away from his family and friends.  Exciting, but uncomfortable.




2. Grade 5


I think John Glenn felt airless, and it felt bumpy.  John Glenn possibly felt sick with all the shaking and rattling.  John was really scared being so close to the sun almost seeing stars sparkling and gleaming above. I think he felt like a sun without a glow, or a dog without a bone, or even a fish without gills.  He felt misplaced.


 3. Grade 5


 I saw the moon and all the stars gleaming and glowing at me.  I feel like I'm at home with everybody smiling, and my neighbors smiling, saying, "Good Morning."



The trip was the best thing of my life.  The stars wer so spectacular; they made me sing and dance in the air while we floated up and up.  When I left the ship, I gleamed over to the star.  Finally, I rode on it; it was so gorgeous, it made me look absolutely beautiful.


We flew to Earth making everyone stop within a sudden beat.  They all thought that star was the most spectacular star ever.  I flew down, gliding, while everyone said, "A piece of heaven is falling from the sky."


Everyone was shocked when they saw it was me.

Prompt: Favorite Pet


2/21 Love Your Pet Day

If you could have any animal you wanted for a pet, what would it be and why?


Really: any animal, even imaginary. What would it be and why?

 1. Grade 6


If I could have any pet in the world, it would be a lion. A lion would protect all of my property.  If someone came in without permission, the lion would scare whoever it is off.  If that person runs off, the lion wuold chase that person. It would scare anything off; it would protect me, and the friendship between me and the lion would be like a monkey and a banana.

2. Grade 6


If I had to choose a pet, I would choose a small black puppy.  They are cute in every way.  I love puppies, except for the fact that you have to clean up their sewage unless they are trained, and you must feed them every day.


Puppies are as snuggly as a pillow, as soft as a fur blanket, as cute as a baby, as small as a size six shoe, and as black as the night.


I love puppies because whenever I am board and have nothing to do or nobidy to play with, my puppy will always be there.

3. Grade 6


If I would have any pet I would have a lizard. They can't get lost or run away because they are in a cage.


Lizards can be very playful; some bite because you don't handle it that much.  Some are very fragile becaues they are small.


Lizards are like a teddybear, and they are a good pet to have.


 4. Grade 7


If I had a chance to own any pet I wanted, I would get an eagle.  It would be cool to have an eagle; I wouldn't have to feed it because it could catch its own food.  I could feed it fish.  I would name it Shock because it is a shock that I have an eagle for a pet. 


It would be so fun.  For instance, when I ride my horse, Shock would watch up ahead for danger like cougars.  Shock is really tough because he has sharp talons as strong as the force of a tree falling down to the ground.  Shock could knock that cougar over, like it could a full grown deer.



5. Grade 7



I would want a Komodo dragon.  They are cool animals because no animal or person would mess with because it would mess with them.  I like them because they are one of the closest relatives to dinosaurs.  They walk on all four legs. They eat meat. They run fast, and they are long.  They have very hard skin to protect themselves from getting hurt.  He would be as strong as a bull, as fast as a fish, bolting his way to where he is going.  He would be the best pet ever.



6. Grade 7



If I could have any pet, I would get a monkey.  Monkeys are so funny-looking and funny.  At the San Diego Zoo, four monkeys wrestled around. They would walk around bull-legged like they can't bend their legs. 


Monkeys are so adorable.  The ones I want are skinny and short. They are hyper.  I didn't want to leave that section of the zoo; I wanted to sit and enjoy.  The monkeys leapt like frogs and pick at each other's butts.  They hop on each others backs; it's so funny.  They are as funny as comedians.






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