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Theme in a Story: What’s The Author Saying?

Home / TFALC Blog: Learning Tools and Educational Tips / Theme in a Story: What’s The Author Saying?

Finding the theme in a story or reading passage can be tricky.

A theme is presented indirectly which means we must make an inference based on the information we’re presented with throughout a story.

The author could tell a story, and at some point insert a line that says:

“The theme of this story is ____________.”


“___________ is the life lesson I’m writing about.”

But what’s the fun in that?

Find the Theme

Learning Tools: How to Find Theme in a storyTo identify the theme of a story, you have to examine what the characters do and say. Then, think beyond those details to the bigger picture.

Think about what a theme could be saying or teaching us about life.

Identifying the theme in a story can not only help us understand the story better, but it can also help us better understand ourselves.

Common themes presented by authors include:

  • Courage
  • Equality
  • Acceptance
  • Friendship
  • Hard work
  • Love

Finding the Theme Takes Practice.

Check out this video and see what you can learn about finding a theme in what you read (or watch – movies have themes too!).

(Video by Mike Bitanga)

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