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Lesson Plan by Mitchell Zuvela B. Sc., B. Ed.

Setting Maps

This free, printable Pixton lesson plan brings the elements of a story to life with comics and storyboards.

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Pixton Lesson Plan on Setting Maps
Pixton Lesson Plan on Setting Maps
Pixton Lesson Plan on Setting Maps

Featured Props

Setting Maps

Student creations come alive with these themed objects – in addition to our library of over 3,000 props!

  • Building
    Building
  • Field
    Field
  • House
    House
  • House
    House
  • Mountain
    Mountain
  • Plane
    Plane
  • Planet
    Planet
  • Prop Vintage Car
    Prop Vintage Car
  • Rain
    Rain
  • Shore
    Shore
Print this Teacher Guide

Teacher Guide

Setting Maps

Step 1Class discussion with students

Getting Started

The setting is more than just where the story takes place, it is an historical place in time that helps build the plot, characters, and theme. Over the course of a narrative, there may be several changes in setting. The setting can be based in reality, such as a city or jungle, or it can be a far-off land. Developing the setting is more than just listing the name of a place or location at a specific point in time. The descriptive detail that the author uses paints a picture in the mind of the reader that will force them to connect with the story and read further. Use the questions below to get your class thinking about setting.

What might be the setting of your story?

  • A wedding
  • A horror movie
  • A summer vacation
  • A war movie
  • A funeral
  • A camping spot

For some students, a certain setting came to mind immediately, however, there may have been a mix of answers depending on what your students relate to. Can a reader's personal experiences affect the way that they connect with the setting?

Opening Discussion

Descriptive detail is essential in building depth and breadth of the setting in a narrative. The more detail you have, the better your setting sounds. Ask your students to compare these two lines of text:

  • "The sisters lived in a house in the jungle."
  • "The identical teen sisters lived in a luxurious, wooden, jungle tree-house that was covered in vines, and was as big as a mansion in Beverly Hills."

The first statement could refer to any type of house, of any size, and does not provide much detail for the reader to work from. The second statement paints a clearer picture for the reader. The use of verbs that describe color, size, and quality, along with the use of similes and metaphors can be very useful in painting the picture of the setting. Write the following settings on the board and ask your class to add descriptive details.

  • Old basement
  • Garbage dump
  • Cemetery
  • Airplane
  • Desert
Step 2Pixton comic-making activities
  • Make a Comic
    Vacation Setting

    View Activity
  • Make a Comic
    Setting Map

    View Activity
  • Extension / Modification
    Poster (Extension / Modification)

    Choose a setting from a poem, play, novel, or short story to create a detailed Poster that illustrates the important parts of the setting.

Step 3Concluding discussion with students

Play a game of "Setting Trivia." Write the name of a popular movie, TV show, or book on the back of an index card, and write the setting of the example on the front. Put the students in pairs or call them to the front for a face-off. Show the students either side of the card, the first to yell the matching answer gets a point.

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Pixton Activity: Setting Maps 1 Vacation Setting

Intro

The setting is more than just where the story takes place, it is an historical moment and a place in time that helps build the plot, characters and theme. Over the course of a narrative, there may be several changes in setting. The setting can be based in reality, such as a city or jungle, or it can be a far-off land or distant galaxy. Developing the setting is more than just listing the name of a place or location in time. The descriptive detail that the author uses helps paint a picture in the mind of the reader that will compel them to connect with the story and read further.

Instructions

Create a Storyboard that explores various settings from a trip around the world.

Choose six locations you would like to visit by searching through the Pixton background themes. For each location, describe the features of the setting and an event that would take place there.

  • What would the setting look, taste, smell, feel, and sound like?
  • Make sure to use lots of descriptive details.

Each panel should include:

  • A title that identifies the setting
  • A detailed description
  • An appropriate illustration

See the rubric for grading guidelines.

Rubric: Vacation Setting

Use this interactive rubric for easy, thorough assessment. It can even be used by students for self-assessment!

5 4 3 2 1
Overview The setting map is thoughtful; descriptions are detailed and informative. The setting map is fully developed; accurate details and insightful descriptions. The setting map is complete; descriptions are simple and settings are accurate. The setting map includes basic details but is not fully developed. The setting map does not accurately reflect the characters.
Meaning Ideas, information and use of detail • strong point of view
• summary is clear and highly detailed
• descriptions are thoughtful and highly developed
• significant details that make setting unique and dynamic
• relevant ideas with consistent analysis
• summary is clear and accurate
• logical descriptions that clarify and develop the idea
• setting is similar; includes relevant details
• relevant ideas with some analysis
• summary is short, but accurate
• descriptions are simple and consistent
• setting similar to description
• some relevant ideas
• summary has several errors
• descriptions are brief and lack detail
• setting vaguely looks like description
• often very brief
• summary is has significant errors
• descriptions are difficult to follow
• setting does not look like description
Style Clarity, variety, impact of visuals and language • language is clear, varied
• flows smoothly; variety in sentences
• setting and characters are fully developed; high attention to detail
• language is clear with some variety
• includes a variety of sentence lengths and patterns
• setting and characters have purpose and significance
• language is clear with little variety
• basic sentence structures with a few variations
• setting and characters are basic, but have purpose
• basic language; vague at times
• repeats a few basic sentence structures
• setting and characters have minimal development
• vague, incorrect and repetitive language
• poorly constructed sentences; little variety
• setting and characters are poorly developed
Form Organization and sequence • proper organization
• panels are thoughtful and detailed
• all panels are organized or logical
• all panels are present
• most panels are organized or logical
• all panels are present
• some panels are organized or logical
• some panels may be missing
• panels are not organized or logical
• panels are missing
Conventions The text demonstrates standard English conventions of usage and mechanics • demonstrates precise English conventions
• uses eloquent words, rich sensory language and mood to convey a realistic picture
• demonstrates precise English conventions
• uses precise words, controlled sensory language and mood to convey a realistic picture
• demonstrates standard English conventions
• uses words and phrases, telling details and sensory language to convey a vivid picture
• demonstrates some accuracy in standard English conventions of usage and mechanics • contains multiple inaccuracies in Standard English conventions of usage and mechanics
Total
Print this Activity

Pixton Activity: Setting Maps 2 Setting Map

Instructions

Create a Mind Map that describes the settings of a poem, play, novel, or short story discussed in class.

  • Choose a variety of settings ( three to six ) that are important in creating the plot.
  • Make sure to use lots of descriptive details and include a page number for the event.

Each panel should include:

  • A title that identifies the setting
  • A detailed description
  • An appropriate illustration

See the rubric for grading guidelines.

Rubric: Setting Map

Use this interactive rubric for easy, thorough assessment. It can even be used by students for self-assessment!

5 4 3 2 1
Overview The setting map is thoughtful; descriptions are detailed and informative. The setting map is fully developed; accurate details and insightful descriptions. The setting map is complete; descriptions are simple and settings are accurate. The setting map includes basic details but is not fully developed. The setting map does not accurately reflect the characters.
Meaning Ideas, information and use of detail • strong point of view
• summary is clear and highly detailed
• descriptions are thoughtful and highly developed
• significant details that make setting unique and dynamic
• relevant ideas with consistent analysis
• summary is clear and accurate
• logical descriptions that clarify and develop the idea
• setting is similar; includes relevant details
• relevant ideas with some analysis
• summary is short, but accurate
• descriptions are simple and consistent
• setting similar to description
• some relevant ideas
• summary has several errors
• descriptions are brief and lack detail
• setting vaguely looks like description
• often very brief
• summary is has significant errors
• descriptions are difficult to follow
• setting does not look like description
Style Clarity, variety, impact of visuals and language • language is clear, varied
• flows smoothly; variety in sentences
• setting and characters are fully developed; high attention to detail
• language is clear with some variety
• includes a variety of sentence lengths and patterns
• setting and characters have purpose and significance
• language is clear with little variety
• basic sentence structures with a few variations
• setting and characters are basic, but have purpose
• basic language; vague at times
• repeats a few basic sentence structures
• setting and characters have minimal development
• vague, incorrect and repetitive language
• poorly constructed sentences; little variety
• setting and characters are poorly developed
Form Organization and sequence • proper organization
• panels are thoughtful and detailed
• all panels are organized or logical
• all panels are present
• most panels are organized or logical
• all panels are present
• some panels are organized or logical
• some panels may be missing
• panels are not organized or logical
• panels are missing
Conventions The text demonstrates standard English conventions of usage and mechanics • demonstrates precise English conventions
• uses eloquent words, rich sensory language and mood to convey a realistic picture
• demonstrates precise English conventions
• uses precise words, controlled sensory language and mood to convey a realistic picture
• demonstrates standard English conventions
• uses words and phrases, telling details and sensory language to convey a vivid picture
• demonstrates some accuracy in standard English conventions of usage and mechanics • contains multiple inaccuracies in Standard English conventions of usage and mechanics
Total

Example Mind Map

Setting in "The Outsiders" by Student

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