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Lesson Plan #:AELP-RDG0002
Author: Donna Calder
School or Affiliation: Bullhead City Intermediate School, Bullhead City, AZ
Endorsed by: These lesson plans are the result of the work of the teachers who have attended the Columbia Education Center’s Summer Workshop. CEC is a consortium of teacher from 14 western states dedicated to improving the quality of education in the rural, western, United States, and particularly the quality of math and science Education. CEC uses Big Sky Telegraph as the hub of their telecommunications network that allows the participating teachers to stay in contact with their trainers and peers that they have met at the Workshops. Date: May 1994

Grade Level(s): Kindergarten, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12


  • Language Arts/Reading

Overview: Students must be able to identify with the characters in a story to fully comprehend the story. This is just one way you and your students will be able to identify character traits.


Students will be able:

  • To recognize character traits and relationships among characters
  • To recognize changes in traits and relationships as the book progresses
  • Materials:

    Teacher: overhead, transparency, chalkboard.
    Students: Good story to read, large piece of drawing paper, pencil or markers, writing paper.


    This can be done as a whole group, small groups, or as individuals, depending on the abilities of your class. If this is to be done as a whole class use an overhead transparency and the students each make their own semantic map while you do your semantic map on the board.

    Inferring Character Traits
    Think: Who is the main character?
    Do: Write that name in the center of a large piece of paper.

    Think: What is he or she like?
    Do: Write descriptions under the name, then draw a box around the name and all descriptors.

    Think: Who else is important in the story?
    Do: Write their names evenly spaced around the center box.

    Think: How does the main character feel about them?
    Do: Write responses on arrows running away from the center box toward each other box.

    Think: How does each minor character feel about the main character?
    Do: Write responses on arrows running from the outer boxes toward the center box.

    When you have finished filling out the boxes described above, write how you felt about the main character at the beginning; at the end of the story.

    You might want your students to change a character trait of the main character and decide how that might change the story.

    Have the students select their favorite character and write a bio poem that is to be shared with all or part of the class

    Bio Poem
    First name ________________________________________
    Four traits _______________________________________
    Related to ________________________________________
    Cares deeply for __________________________________
    Who feels _________________________________________
    Who needs _________________________________________
    Who gives _________________________________________
    Who would like to see _____________________________
    Resident of _______________________________________

    Example of a bio poem

    Snow White,
    Beautiful, giving, loving, unhappy
    The Queen, her wicked stepmother
    The seven dwarfs
    Safe in the forest
    The love of a Prince
    Love to the seven dwarfs
    Goodness throughout the kingdom
    The forest.