The Influence of Character on Narrative...and Vis a Versa: Panel Analysis (Day 1 of 2)

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SWBAT analyze characterization OR narrative techniques from Persepolis by creating a graphic organizer to be used in student led discussions.

Big Idea

Characterization and narrative often work hand in hand in a narrative text. Looking at how each works separately then discussing their relationship will allow students to comprehend text at a much deeper level.


10 minutes

We will start class today with ten minutes of reading time. I will read with the students during this time. 

Review of narrative/characterization overview

5 minutes

After our daily ten minutes of reading time, we will dive right into where we left off yesterday. We will review their brainstormed lists for characterization or narrative and then I will partner them up to analyze sets of panels for themes or trends shown in Satrapi's techniques. We will do this as a way to continue practicing our reading and analysis skills for the reading of graphic novels. 

Panel analysis and graphic organizer creation

30 minutes

Now that we have a basic understanding of Satrapi's purpose, we will move into a closer analysis of what she is doing in the text. 

For this activity, students will work with a partner to analyze how Satrapi uses either narrative structure or characterization (RL.9-10.3 and RL.9-10.5) to advance her message, themes, and/or ideas.

This book does a great job of presenting a disjointed plot, which serves the purpose of creating tension. This disjointed plot also presents an interesting technique for characterizing the main characters as we often see them at different ages/stages of their lives without much transition. The author is asking her reader to be in the mind of a ten year old girl, which means we have to engage with her memories in the way they appear. I'm hoping that today's activity will help students to not only comprehend why this is happening, but analyze why Satrapi uses this narrative style so that they can have a better understanding of the book as a whole and/or utilize a similar technique in their own memoirs later in the unit. 

Once they are grouped and moved, I will hand out the characterization and narrative panel sets and give the following instructions: 

1. Review the panels and brainstorm themes or ideas that emerge for your given element of craft.

2. Think about how you might group or organize the panels into categories and label your panels.

3. Cut and organize the panels according to your markings.

4. Create a graphic representation of your sorting using the poster paper provided. Make sure you explain your groupings/organization so that others can benefit from your thinking.

5. You will be grouped with another set of partners to discuss the themes you saw in studying your element of craft.


Discussion Groups

10 minutes

Once students have completed their sorting and poster creation, I will ask students to post their posters around the room to create a gallery walk from which they can gather information from their peers.

They will use the questions on the back of the sheet to synthesize their thinking about how Satrapi uses both narrative and characterization to create her memoir. Here are a few samples of what the students created: 

We will end class today with this gallery walk and will start tomorrow's class with a discussion based on the information they gather from the posters (SL.9-10.1).