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Characterization Lesson

Every story has characters, or at least one character. Discussing characters is something that you and your students can do with any story. It is helpful in these discussions to have a shared vocabulary. This lesson on characterizations will help you and your students develop that vocabulary:

Characterization Lesson – Slide show presentation explaining direct and indirect characterizations. Includes a five question review assignment after the lesson.
Characterization Lesson PowerPoint

Common Core State Standards Related to Characterizations

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.R.3 – Analyze how and why individuals, events, or ideas develop and interact over the course of a text.

Expand to View All Common Core State Standards Related to Characterizations

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.K.3 – With prompting and support, identify characters, settings, and major events in a story.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.1.3 – Describe characters, settings, and major events in a story, using key details.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.2.3 – Describe how characters in a story respond to major events and challenges.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.2.7 – Use information gained from the illustrations and words in a print or digital text to demonstrate understanding of its characters, setting, or plot.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.3.3 – Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.4.3 – Describe in depth a character, setting, or event in a story or drama, drawing on specific details in the text (e.g., a character’s thoughts, words, or actions).

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.5.3 – Compare and contrast two or more characters, settings, or events in a story or drama, drawing on specific details in the text (e.g., how characters interact).

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.6.3 – Describe how a particular story’s or drama’s plot unfolds in a series of episodes as well as how the characters respond or change as the plot moves toward a resolution.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.7.3 – Analyze how particular elements of a story or drama interact (e.g., how setting shapes the characters or plot).

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.8.3 – Analyze how particular lines of dialogue or incidents in a story or drama propel the action, reveal aspects of a character, or provoke a decision.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.3 – Analyze how complex characters (e.g., those with multiple or conflicting motivations) develop over the course of a text, interact with other characters, and advance the plot or develop the theme.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.11-12.3 – Analyze the impact of the author’s choices regarding how to develop and relate elements of a story or drama (e.g., where a story is set, how the action is ordered, how the characters are introduced and developed).

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Common Core Lesson and Unit Plans
Understanding Common Core State Standards

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Leave a comment


  1. MP

     /  May 15, 2020

    Amazingly perfect lessons for what I needed given the work-from-home circumstances. Thank you so much!

  2. Tracy Carver

     /  January 28, 2019

    Thank you so very much for creating and sharing these lessons. You have given me valuable resources that I definitely use in my class. I appreciate your help and hard work.

  3. Terri

     /  September 8, 2013

    Mr. Morton,
    These are exactly what I would have to create myself, but yours are much better, and entertaining for my middle school students.

  4. Teaira McMurtry

     /  March 30, 2013

    Just awesome! I teach HS English and this website is so useful!

    Great Job!


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