When introducing a new textbook chapter, THIEVES is a strategy to make the process easier! This is fantastic for science textbooks and can be used for grades 3-12. Teach your students how to preview the chapter and to improve their comprehension. Printable resources are down below!


  • Title
    • What is the title?
    • What do I already know about this topic?
    • What are two questions I have about this topic?
  • Headings/Subheadings
    • What does this heading tell me I will be reading about?
    • What is the topic of the paragraph beneath it?
    • How can I turn this heading into a question that is likely to be answered in the text?
  • Introduction
    • Is there an opening paragraph, perhaps italicized?
    • Does the first paragraph introduce the chapter?
    • What does the introduction tell me I will be reading about?
  • Every first sentence in a paragraph
    • What do I think this chapter is going to be about, based on the first sentence in each paragraph?
  • Visuals and vocabulary
    • Does the chapter include photographs, drawings, maps, charts, or graphs?
    • What can I learn from the visuals in a chapter?
    • How do captions help me better understand the meaning?
    • Is there a list of key vocabulary terms and definitions?
    • Are there important words in boldface type throughout the chapter and do I know what the boldfaced words mean?
    • Can I tell the meaning of the boldfaced words from the sentences in which they are embedded?
  • End of chapter questions
    • What do the questions ask?
    • What information do I learn from the questions?
  • Summarize
    • What do I understand and recall about the topics covered in the summary?

Elements of THIEVES:

Read Write Think provides a comprehensive outline with additional resources, standards, student examples, and an instructional plan.