Analyzing Character -Lesson 3 of Cinder Book One

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SWBAT analyze how an author develops characters and describe those characters using appropriate vocabulary.

Big Idea

Character development with Pixar

Warm Up

5 minutes

After allowing time for review of the agenda for the day, I display the attached image of Pixar characters and ask students to share the following with their table mates: Name and describe your favorite Pixar character. (If you do not have tables students can always turn to a neighbor to share.)

As most middle school students are very familiar with Pixar films, this leads to a burst of excitement and discussion.  I love it when I get them excited about language arts! After two minutes of discussion, I pull the class back together.  At this point, I always share my favorite and describe the character. Then, ask students to consider how the author created the characters they love. This leads into the lesson in the next segment.

Lesson & Guided Practice

25 minutes

Class today revolves around a Powerpoint (linked here from my google docs) that leads the teacher and students through a mini-lesson on characterization and categorizing characters so that they may be described intelligently and with an awareness of the proper vocabulary.

To check for understanding after the slide reviewing flat and round characters students will complete an Edmodo quiz.

Question Prompt: 1
Total Points: 1

Which of the following would be considered minor characters in Cinder?

Chang Sacha
All of the above

Question Prompt: 2
Total Points: 1

Cinder is an example of which of the following types of character?


The guided practice falls in the last few slides of the Powerpoint.

If you prefer to use other video clips, view the video included here to review how to edit the video clips included.

Independent Work

20 minutes

Students will now continue listen to the audio -picking up where we left in the last class - and follow in their books. As they do they will be very involved in the text, actively reading per the instructions on the Reading Circle sheets.After completing the guided practice students should be more aware of the characterization techniques used by the author and the descriptive categories each character fits into. 

Students should now be adding descriptive detail including page numbers to reference to their character list reflecting an analysis of the characters.

I will allow the class to read until the last five minutes of class time and record their stopping point



Wrap up

5 minutes

Wrap up time is spent allowing students to "debrief" independently - collecting their post its and/or completing their thoughts on their Reading Circle sheets. We always discuss questions or concerns before class is dismissed, so during the last few minutes of class, I would ask students to share some of the new ideas they have about the characters in Cinder at their table.