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Character Mapping

Time Frame:
1 class period that runs 30 minutes.

Group Size:
Small Groups


Using popular trade books students will create a character map by first working on their own, and then in small groups. Students will share their work with the whole class.

Main Curriculum Tie:
English Language Arts Grade 5Reading: Literature Standard 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.


  1. Large sheets of art paper or butcher paper
  2. Crayons
  3. Pencils
  4. Popular trade books used in reading groups.

    Suggested titles:

    • Holes, by Louis Sachar
    • Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, by Roald Dahl
    • Trouble River, by Betsy Byars
    • Number the Stars, by Lois Lowry
    • Because of Winn Dixie, by Kate DiCamillo

Background For Teachers:
The teacher may use any trade books he or she is comfortable with, however, it is important that the teacher is familiar with the characters in each book so that the students can be monitored and assisted with their projects.

Student Prior Knowledge:
Students should be comfortable reading the text provided. The material needs to be at the student's independent reading level.

Intended Learning Outcomes:
Students will understand how to create an organizational web. They will discuss and recall events from the book they have read.

Instructional Procedures:

  1. Have each student select a character from the book they have read.

  2. Using a regular sheet of paper, students will create a web with the character name and a small drawing of the character in the middle of the web.

    Students will then add different characteristics of that character on the arms of the web.

  3. When the student has completed the web they will meet with the other children who read the same book and extend the web on a large poster.

    The title of the book should be in the center of the poster and each character map will extend from the title.

  4. Each small groups will then share their posters with the rest of the class.


Strategies For Diverse Learners:
Struggling students may need to work in pairs to brainstorm ideas. Gifted students could create maps of books they have read on their own.

Students could use a ladder organizer to write down events in the order they happened in the story.

This lesson can be adapted for use with a read aloud book the teacher presents to the class over a period of time, or as a book report option for small groups that have been reading different selections in literature circles.

Assessment Plan:
Teacher will assess student's learning by listening to and observing the final products the students have created.

Utah LessonPlans
brooke rauzon

Created Date :
Aug 02 2005 11:25 AM