Character and Setting Study Guide
Character and Setting
In this lesson, you'll discover who's in a story, and when and where the events take place are very important.
CHARACTERS ARE THE people, animals, or lifelike objects in a story. Since the author makes up the characters, they can be anything he or she wishes, from real-life humans to aliens to talking cars! Characters show what they're like through their words and actions, and how they respond to other characters.
- In Persia, there lived two brothers: Casmir and Ali Baba. Brothers they were, but as different as day and night. Casmir, the older brother, married a rich woman, though she was often mean to him and others. He became a wealthy merchant. But Ali Baba married a sweet girl who was very, very poor. Love he had, but he had to work hard cutting wood and selling it in the marketplace.
Each character, like those in Ali Baba and the 40 Thieves and other stories in this book, has special traits, or qualities. One character may be tall, angry, and dishonest. Another may be gentle, thoughtful, and heroic. Having a variety of characters in a story makes it more interesting.
The setting of a story is where and when it takes place. In Ali Baba, it was Persia. Most stories have more than one setting. Each is important to what happens in the story.
- On Saturday morning, the family packed the car and left for a camping trip on Mount Vista. Later that day, Mr. Maxim and the two boys left their campsite and headed up the mountain. A sudden snowstorm swept through the area that night. And Monday morning a distressed Mrs. Maxim walked to the nearest state police post to report that her husband and boys were missing.
Here the settings are the family home, the campsite, and the police station. As you read, note different characters and settings, and how a setting can influence what characters do or how they speak. For example, at home Mrs. Maxim might be very calm and friendly, but at the police station, she may stammer or cry as she speaks very formally to the officers.
Practice exercises for this study guide can be found at:
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