Activity Overview

A theme is a central idea, subject, or message in a story. Many stories have more than one important theme. For this activity, students will identify and illustrate the themes in Because of Mr. Terupt. Teachers may want the students to identify and illustrate 3 themes, one for each cell, or identify one theme, and show three examples of it, one example per cell.

Examples of Themes in Because of Mr. Terupt


One example of forgiveness is when Danielle, Jessica, and Anna forgive Alexia for the terrible way she treated them.


All of the characters change because of Mr. Terupt. One example is how Jeffery used to never talk and was considered a slacker. The reader learns of his brother’s passing and he discovers it wasn’t his fault.

Personal Responsibility

The students learn to take responsibility for their own actions as well as not to blame themselves for something that isn’t their fault. One example is Alexia: she learns that she must fix the problems that she has caused by being so cruel to others.


There are many friendships that struggle and are formed throughout the book. One example is the friendship, or lack thereof, of Alexia and Danielle. They were friends when they were younger, then Alexia became the mean girl; unable to be trusted. When Alexia realizes how wrong she’s been, she truly apologizes and the girls become real friends.

Template and Class Instructions

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Use This Assignment With My Students", update the instructions on the Edit Tab of the assignment.)

Due Date:

Objective: Create a storyboard that identifies recurring themes in Because of Mr. Terupt. Illustrate instances of each theme and write a short description below each cell.

Student Instructions:

  1. Click "Start Assignment".
  2. Identify the themes from Because of Mr. Terupt you wish to include and write them in the headings.
  3. Create an image for an example that represents this theme using appropriate scenes, characters, and items.
  4. Write a short description of each of the examples.
  5. Save and submit storyboard.

Lesson Plan Reference

Grade Level 4-6

Difficulty Level 3 (Developing to Mastery)

Type of Assignment Individual

Type of Activity: Themes, Symbols & Motifs

Common Core Standards
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/6/2] Determine a theme or central idea of a text and how it is conveyed through particular details; provide a summary of the text distinct from personal opinions or judgments
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/4/2] Determine a theme of a story, drama, or poem from details in the text; summarize the text.
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/5/2] Determine a theme of a story, drama, or poem from details in the text, including how characters in a story or drama respond to challenges or how the speaker in a poem reflects upon a topic; summarize the text.

More Storyboard That Activities

Because of Mr. Terupt

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