In our class discussion, we first reviewed that a dynamic character is one that changes and develops throughout the novel.
I then explained that we will keep track of how Paul changes throughout the novel, and we will use textual evidence to support our opinions. We are going to record significant moments in Paul’s life to highlight the type of person he is portraying and focus upon how literary elements not only create a story but also contribute to character development.
After distributing the circle maps, I explain the organization of the maps. The inner circle identifies the character (Paul), in the circle mid-way we will record the setting and the character trait being referred to, and the outer circle will be where we record the textual evidence to support our inferences.
I ask the students to refer to the notebooks where they have previously glued in the Character Traits List, so they can refer to personality traits as needed.
We will keep track of this information as we progress through the novel so that in the end, we will have information to explain how Paul’s character was dynamic.
In the novel, there are several settings that impact the development of Paul's character (the protagonist) and demonstrate the interaction of literary elements within a text.
These settings include: Houston, New Home Lake Windsor Downs, Lake Windsor Middle School Soccer Field, and Sinkhole at school on 9/11.
In small groups, students recorded information in their circle maps identifying details and textual evidence that affect the development of Paul's character.
Then we discussed details as a whole group focusing upon the impact of setting and incidents upon the changes in characterization of the protagonist. Students could add to or delete information as they listened to the classroom discussion.
Using the information gathered in their circle maps, students responded to the following prompt in a double entry journal:
Prompt: Explain how Paul’s character is changing since his arrival at Lake Windsor Downs.
This is a formative assessment demonstrating student comprehension of the interaction of literary elements. After I read these responses, students kept this for future reference as they gather details to respond to Paul's dynamic character at the end of the novel.