Character Teacher Resources
Find Character educational ideas and activities
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What a Character! Comparing Literary Adaptations
What do Robert Downey Jr., Basil Rathbone, Jeremy Brett, Fritz Weaver, Roger Moore, Benedict Cumberbatch, and Daffy Duck have in common? Why, it’s elementary, my dear Watson! They all have portrayed Sherlock Holmes. Literary detectives launch an investigation of how varying portrayals of a character influence a drama. The approach detailed here could be used with a wide range of literature. From Romeo and Juliet to The Great Gatsby, your sleuths will be engaged in the search for clues that reveal how who done it changes everything.
Character Attributes in Writing
Third graders analyze the importance of characters in fiction writing and performances. In this theatre instructional activity, 3rd graders identify the important characteristics of a fictional character and how to portray a character through many different physical and psychological choices. Students act out characters for their classmates and critique their own performances.
New! Character Tea Party
A tea party in Wonderland? An East Egg brunch with Gatsby, Daisy, Tom, and Nick? Breakfast with Miss Havisham, Lady Macbeth, and Abigail Williams? Or dinner with Andre, Hamlet, and Randle Patrick McMurphy? Class members select a favorite book or theme, dress up as a character, and get together for refreshments and pithy conversation. Groups create the invitation, decide on the menu, decorate the room, and outline a script. The packet includes suggestions and links to resources. A great way to review a novel, a course, or prepare for the AP literature exam.
The Art of Storytelling: Ramayana Character Studies
Take the text of the Ramayana and let it become a visual funfest of student interaction. View through PowerPoint artistic representations of the characters of the Ramayana and Mahabharata, and have pupils complete the character study worksheet from their viewing and reading. The materials make it easy for the students to continue storytelling traditions. Have your writers create their own stories using the conflicts and characterizations from the lesson, and practice the oral tradition in class.
New! Shadow Theater - Bringing Your Character to Life
Get ready to make a few characters to put on a show and make understanding a complex text that much more fun. Shadow puppets are used to bring the epic story of Rama to life. Not only are the puppets going to help learners connect to the text, they are also going to help them identify and compare how specific characters are portrayed throughout the tale.
New! Accent Marks & Special Characters in Spanish
Check out this clear description of how and when to use accent marks and special characters. The information, necessary to truly understand the purpose of special characters and accent marks would make a great reference material for pupils. Also included is a presentation with the same information, which would be appropriate for in-class use with some note taking. The material is broken up into manageable pieces for the presentation and includes a practice exercise.
Inferring About Characters Based on How They Respond to Challenges (Chapter 4: "Los Higos/Figs")
How do you know what a character's personality is like if an author doesn't tell you? With a focus on character development in Esperanza Rising, pupils complete a jigsaw activity to analyze the actions of Mama, Abuelita, and Miguel. Once group members have shared with their expert group and their own group of three, they compare and contrast the other characters to Esperanza. Class members must make inferences using author details and character behavior. During this well-sequenced lesson plan, learners will complete a quiz, participate in a jigsaw activity, create posters and charts, and write briefly for an exit ticket, and close with a discussion about human rights.
Characters Changing Over Time (Chapter 10: "Las Papas/Potatos")
Engage further in Esperanza Rising with a focus on close reading and metaphor. Class members zero in on the tenth chapter, examining characters and big ideas. Pupils discuss the text in small groups and as a whole class, and participate in a give-one-get-one activity, using their sticky notes to mark pieces of evidence that they want to share. As a final assignment, writers compose a response to a final question that sums up the lesson. An effective Common Core designed lesson.
Character Traits in Fables
Combining art, music, dance, and reading comprehension, this lesson is geared to reach all ability levels. After reading a variety of fables and discussing story elements and character traits, class members select a moral to use as the basis of their own fable about two characters, one with foibles and one without. Your fabulists then collaborate on a class mural, a music composition, and a dance which reflect the traits of characters in their stories. Document it all on a class website.
Character and Situation
Delve into narrative writing that puts choice in the hands of the writers. Kids pick their own characters, emotions, items, and places from a list and tie them together in the exposition. Several questions help guide the writers toward fully understanding and developing the characters in their story.
Comic Book Characters
Explore gender stereotypes by analyzing how male and female characters are depicted in comic books. Using the provided Comic Book Analysis sheet, students record the attributes of male and female comic book characters. Then the whole class records common attributes, and discusses what messages about gender they have discovered. Finally, small groups design and create a nonstereotypical comic book character.
Character Analysis and The Crucible
Readers of The Crucible use a SATDO chart to collect evidence they will use to craft interpretive statements and an analysis of one of Miller’s characters. Background information on the play and about Miller, links to handouts, extensions, and assessments are included with the richly detailed plan.
Settings that Reinforce Characters
A vivid setting can bring a story to life. Challenge your writers to dive into this element as they complete worksheets in preparation for their first draft. This packet starts by giving an example of a description that simply tells who a character is and one that lets the setting speak for him. To practice, learners create animated settings for three hypothetical characters. They do the same for characters in their own story.
Studying Characters 2: Matilda
This multifaceted and very complete lesson plan provides several ways for young scholars of literature to explore character. Specifically this resource focuses on the character of Miss Trunchbull from Matilda. After reading two pre-selected passages about this character, your class will complete several provided discussion, text marking, drawing, and creative writing activities. Chock-full of creative ideas and prepared materials, this is a must-see resource for any teacher who is teaching this story.
New! Express Yourself Lesson Seed 10: Character Development
Make a study of Timothy and his development as a character over the course of the first half or so of The Cay. This idea focuses in particular on chapters 10 through 12. Learners start out by working on double-entry journals created in an earlier lesson. Next, they discuss Timothy and make a list of what the know about his background. Finally, they use this list and any other help you provide to write an analytical response to a provided prompt about Timothy.
Protagonists, antagonists, stereotypes, and foils. Introduce your scriptwriters to major, minor, round, and flat characters, and how to create them. Rich in examples and activities, the packet includes the directions for an exercise entitled “The Six-Fold Path to Great Characters,” as well as worksheet templates.
Third graders work in pairs to choose two characters and find their similarities and differences. In this character instructional activity, 3rd graders compare characters by their actions and attributes. Students individually complete a graphic organizer.
Lesson Plan 13: Character Interviews on NaNoTV
Kids love to pretend. Use this imaginative energy to develop their understanding of characterization. Class members dress up as a character from their novel-writing project and sit for a filmed interview. In responding to questions about their character’s likes, dislikes, and experiences, the character becomes more fully developed in the writer’s mind. This focuses on creating characters for a novel writing project; however, the activity can used for any study of characterization.
Character Interviews on NaNo-TV
Cool! Encourage your class to get to know a story's characters on a whole new level! Dress like a character and sit for an interview with a TV host. The clear explanations, great examples, and practice activities included in this 16-page worksheet will help your young writers bring their characters to life.
Characters from a Box
Character analysis is a skill we use when we read literary works or want to write a good story. Learners will use drama to practice character analysis while focusing on the details that make characters act the way they do. They'll each chose an item from a box, put it on, and then think of who the character is, how they act, where they came from. Then, they'll improve a scene where two or more characters (students) interact. This is a fantastic way to prime learners for a narrative writing project.