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Lesson Plan by Lauren Martin M.Ed.

Tracking Character Evolution

Pixton Lesson Plan on Tracking Character Evolution

Make character development come to life with comics!

Including these awesome activities:
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Featured Layouts

When students complete the activities in this lesson plan, they will use the following comic layout types.

  • Mind Map
  • Plot Diagram
  • Character Map
  • Poster
  • Storyboard

Your students will create amazing images like these in no time!

This free, printable Pixton lesson plan brings character development to life with comics and storyboards.
This free, printable Pixton lesson plan brings character development to life with comics and storyboards.
This free, printable Pixton lesson plan brings character development to life with comics and storyboards.

Featured Props

Tracking Character Evolution

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

  • Arrow
    Arrow
  • Barbell
    Barbell
  • Bike
    Bike
  • Book
    Book
  • Circle
    Circle
  • Compass
    Compass
  • Cube
    Cube
  • Evolution
    Evolution
  • Spotlight
    Spotlight
  • Symbol
    Symbol
Print this Teacher Guide

Teacher Guide

Tracking Character Evolution

Step 1Class discussion with students

Getting Started

Students should understand that their initial impression of a character will change and develop as they continue to read. While there are static and dynamic characters, all characters make a "first impression" at the beginning of a text, but the reader gains a deeper understanding of the character's nuanced personality, motivations, and complicated history as the plot moves forward. Usually the audience will gain a greater sense of respect, appreciation, or empathy for the character.

Opening Discussion

Introduce the following concepts:

  • Static Character: A character who does not undergo important changes in personality or perspective throughout a text. The reader has the same opinion of and information about the character from the beginning to the end of the story.
  • Dynamic Character: A character who does undergo major transitions or changes throughout the text. The reader's opinion of the character changes as they learn more about the character's personality, motivations, history, and perspective. Dynamic characters evolve throughout the text.
  • Tracking Character Evolution: Taking notes on new information presented about a character that reinforces or changes the reader's opinion of the character.
    • Scenes involving a static character's actions will always reinforce a reader's original opinion of that character.
    • Scenes involving a dynamic character's actions may emphasize the importance of a specific character trait or introduce a new component of the character's history, personality, or perspective.
    • Only a dynamic character evolves in the eyes of the reader
    • In each scene or in each component of the plot (exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, resolution), track character evolution by citing specific evidence that develops their personality, history, or perspective.
Step 2Pixton comic-making activities
  • Make a Mind Map
    Static vs. Dynamic Character Evolution

    Complete after class discussion.

    View Activity
  • Make a Plot Diagram
    Character Evolution Plot Diagram

    Begin at the start of the novel, and make additions throughout the unit.

    View Activity
  • Make a Character Map
    Character Evolution Character Map

    Begin at the start of the novel, and make additions throughout the unit.

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

    Create a Venn Diagram on a Poster to compare and contrast your idea of a character from the beginning to the end of the novel.

  • Extension / Modification
    Storyboard (Extension / Modification)

    For each relevant scene, create a Storyboard to illustrate what new information that scene taught you about a character.

Step 3Concluding discussion with students

Discuss the following:

  • What is the difference between a dynamic and static character?
  • What are some examples of stories (books or television/film) that only have one or two dynamic characters, and many static characters?
  • What are some examples of stories (books or television/film) that have many dynamic characters?
  • Why do authors let characters evolve instead of sharing all of the information at the beginning of the text?
  • How are static characters as important as dynamic characters?
  • In what ways are there static and dynamic characters in life (personal life, history, and current events)?
Print this Activity

Pixton Activity: Tracking Character Evolution 1 Static vs. Dynamic Character Evolution

Featured Layouts

  • Mind Map

Intro

Review the following concepts:

  • Static Character: A character who does not undergo important changes in personality or perspective throughout a text. The reader has the same opinion of and information about the character from the beginning to the end of the story.
  • Dynamic Character: A character who does undergo major transitions or changes throughout the text. The reader's opinion of the character changes as they learn more about the character's personality, motivations, history and perspective. Dynamic characters evolve throughout the text.
  • Tracking Character Evolution: Taking notes on new information presented about a character that reinforces or changes the reader's opinion of the character.
    • Scenes involving a static character's actions will always reinforce a reader's original opinion of that character.
    • Scenes involving a dynamic character's actions may emphasize the importance of a specific character trait or introduce a new component of the character's history, personality or perspective.
    • Only a dynamic character evolves in the eyes of the reader
    • In each scene or in each component of the plot (exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, resolution), track character evolution by citing specific evidence that develops their personality, history or perspective.

Instructions

Create a Mind Map to define static vs. dynamic characters and to explain how to track their evolution:

  • Label the panel title with the concept.
  • Write a detailed description of the concept.
  • Include an appropriate illustration for each panel.

See the rubric for grading guidelines.

Print this Activity

Pixton Activity: Tracking Character Evolution 2 Character Evolution Plot Diagram

Featured Layouts

  • Plot Diagram

Intro

Review the following concepts:

  • Static Character: A character who does not undergo important changes in personality or perspective throughout a text. The reader has the same opinion of and information about the character from the beginning to the end of the story.
  • Dynamic Character: A character who does undergo major transitions or changes throughout the text. The reader's opinion of the character changes as they learn more about the character's personality, motivations, history and perspective. Dynamic characters evolve throughout the text.
  • Tracking Character Evolution: Taking notes on new information presented about a character that reinforces or changes the reader's opinion of the character.
    • Scenes involving a static character's actions will always reinforce a reader's original opinion of that character.
    • Scenes involving a dynamic character's actions may emphasize the importance of a specific character trait or introduce a new component of the character's history, personality or perspective.
    • Only a dynamic character evolves in the eyes of the reader
    • In each scene or in each component of the plot (exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, resolution), track character evolution by citing specific evidence that develops their personality, history or perspective.

Instructions

Track Character Evolution using a Plot Diagram:

  • Include a brief description and an illustration for each point on the plot diagram (introduction, rising action, climax, falling action, conclusion).
  • Identify the key character development that is important to that specific point in the story.
  • Think about quotes that could be used to help create meaning in each panel.

See the rubric for grading guidelines.

Rubric: Character Evolution Plot Diagram

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 plot diagram is focused, with advanced use of language/ideas. The plot diagram is accurate, well developed, with consistent use of details. The plot diagram is complete and accurate; lacks consistent use of specific details. The plot diagram is basic; has several errors,or lacks detail. The plot diagram is inaccurate and difficult to follow.
Meaning Ideas, information and use of detail • strong point of view
• summary is clear and highly detailed
• descriptions are thoughtful and highly developed
• relevant ideas with consistent analysis
• summary is clear and accurate
• logical descriptions that clarify and develop the idea
• relevant ideas with some analysis
• summary is short, but accurate
• descriptions are simple and consistent
• some relevant ideas
• summary has several errors
• descriptions are brief and lack detail
• often very brief
• summary is has significant errors
• descriptions are difficult to follow
Style Clarity, variety, impact of visuals and language • varies language to develop meaning
• varies sentence structure for effect
• images and characters have impact on the meaning of the panel
• language is clear with some variety
• varies sentence structure
• makes attempts to use descriptive language
• images and characters have purpose and significance
• language is clear with little variety
• basic sentence structure with a few variations
• images and characters are basic, but have purpose
• basic language; vague at times
• some variety in sentence length and type
• images and characters have minimal development
• vague, incorrect and repetitive language
• poorly constructed sentences; little variety
• images and characters are poorly developed
Form Organization and sequence (beginning, middle, end) • proper organization
• sequence is highly effective and has purpose
• all panels are thoughtful and detailed
• all panels are organized or logical
• logical sequence
• all panels are present
• most panels are organized or logical
• consistent attention to sequence
• all panels are present
• some panels are organized or logical
• some attention to sequence
• some panels may be missing
• panels are not organized or logical
• no attention to sequence
• 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 Plot Diagram

Character Evolution Plot Diagram by Student
ExpositionHow is the character initially introduced or described? What are the very first pieces of information or actions that the author shares concerning the character?

Huck Finn is described as a boy who prefers the fun adventures and freedom of the outdoors as opposed to the harsh discipline and rules of being "civilized" at school.
Main ConflictWhat are the recurring themes or motifs that run throughout the course of the text? What do these themes reveal about the character's main internal and external conflicts, values, and goals?

Huck Finn is intuitive and independent enough to realize the hypocrises of a society and religion that promote racism and slavery. He stays true to himself and his morals despite societal pressures.
Rising ActionWhat events, actions, motives, conflicts, history and traits are introduced through various scenes during the rising action?

Huck Finn escapes after being captured by his drunken father. Huck is no longer a simple and fun-loving boy, but a boy with no mother and an abusive father. Huck displays his cunning, courage and resilience during his interactions with his father and his escape plan.
ClimaxHow does the character handle the major conflict or decision in the story? What choices do they make and why? How do they handle challenging situations, and what are their priorities in life?

Huck finally decides to not turn Jim in and to help him escape. He chooses morality over conformity to society. He also displays his leadership skills when he convinces Tom to change his mind and help Jim escape.
Falling ActionWhat decisions, mistakes, motives, actions and thoughts drive the character evolution in the falling action?

When Aunt Polly catches Huck and Tom, Tom admits that Jim had already been set free in the widow's will. Tom's immaturity and selfish desire for adventure contrasts and highlights Huck's growing maturity, morality, selflessness, and empathy.
DenouementHow does the story end? How has your opinion of the character evolved from the beginning to the end of the story? How does the character feel or what have they accomplished by the end of the story? What does the projected future look like for the character?

Huck's initially disgruntled, morally-confused and mischievous nature has evolved into a strong sense of purpose.

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Print this Activity

Pixton Activity: Tracking Character Evolution 3 Character Evolution Character Map

Featured Layouts

  • Character Map

Intro

Review the following concepts:

  • Static Character: A character who does not undergo important changes in personality or perspective throughout a text. The reader has the same opinion of and information about the character from the beginning to the end of the story.
  • Dynamic Character: A character who does undergo major transitions or changes throughout the text. The reader's opinion of the character changes as they learn more about the character's personality, motivations, history and perspective. Dynamic characters evolve throughout the text.
  • Tracking Character Evolution: Taking notes on new information presented about a character that reinforces or changes the reader's opinion of the character.
    • Scenes involving a static character's actions will always reinforce a reader's original opinion of that character.
    • Scenes involving a dynamic character's actions may emphasize the importance of a specific character trait or introduce a new component of the character's history, personality or perspective.
    • Only a dynamic character evolves in the eyes of the reader
    • In each scene or in each component of the plot (exposition, rising action, climax, falling action, resolution), track character evolution by citing specific evidence that develops their personality, history or perspective.

Instructions

Track Character Evolution using a Character Map:

  • Include a brief description of character evolution throughout the plot (introduction, rising action, climax, falling action/conclusion).
  • Identify the key character development that is important to that specific point in the story.
  • Think about quotes that could be used to help create meaning in each panel.

See the rubric for grading guidelines.

Rubric: Character Evolution Character 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 character map is thoughtful; descriptions are detailed and informative. The character map is fully developed; accurate details and insightful descriptions. The character map is complete; descriptions are simple and settings are accurate. The character map includes basic details, but is not fully developed. The character 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 characters unique and dynamic
• relevant ideas with consistent analysis
• summary is clear and accurate
• logical descriptions that clarify and develop the idea
• characters are similar; includes relevant details
• relevant ideas with some analysis
• summary is short, but accurate
• descriptions are simple and consistent
• characters similar to description
• some relevant ideas
• summary has several errors
• descriptions are brief and lack detail
• characters vaguely looks like description
• often very brief
• summary is has significant errors
• descriptions are difficult to follow
• characters do not look like description
Style Clarity, variety, impact of visuals and language • language is clear, varied
• flows smoothly; variety in sentences
• images and characters are fully developed; high attention to detail
• language is clear with some variety
• includes a variety of sentence lengths and patterns
• images and characters have purpose and significance
• language is clear with little variety
• basic sentence structures with a few variations
• images and characters are basic, but have purpose
• basic language; vague at times
• repeats a few basic sentence structures
• images and characters have minimal development
• vague, incorrect and repetitive language
• poorly constructed sentences; little variety
• images 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

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