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Identifying Character Traits
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Students will be able to identify character traits and find portions of textual evidence to support them.
- Introduce the class to the concept of a character trait. Explain that a character trait describes the behavior or attitude of a person, and that one could be used to describe anyone in the classroom.
- Give an example: If someone has a character trait of being persevering,he doesn't give up when things get hard.
- Provide a non-example to help students understand what character traits are not: Black hair is not a character trait, since it only describes physical appearance. Character traits describe behavior and attitude.
- Beginning: Provide a visual from a recent story to help describe the physical traits and character traits of the character.
- Allow them to restate the difference between physical traits and character traits in their home language (L1) or new language (L2).
- Intermediate: Provide definitions for behavior, motivations, and attitude.
- Allow ELs to repeat the definitions in their new or home language.
- Ask if they can come up with any non examples or examples of character traits from a recent read aloud.
Explicit instruction/Teacher modeling(10 minutes)
- Display the cover of You Can Do It!, and let students know that today's lesson will be focused on describing a character from the story named Linden.
- Begin reading the story aloud, and pause halfway through.
- Display the character trait graphic organizer.
- As a class, fill out one of the sectors of the chart using what you've learned about Linden thus far. For example, you could say that he's thoughtful, since he seems to think a lot about his future. For textual evidence or a portion of the text that supports your claim, you could use the phrase "I don't know my it," since it shows that he's been thinking about what his special talent could be, but can't figure it out.
- Beginning: Give students a scaffolded graphic organizer where they need to fill-in-the-blanks during the explicit instruction.
- Intermediate: Pre-teach any challenging vocabulary and provide definitions during the story of words that can be easily defined.
Guided practice/Interactive modeling(10 minutes)
- Read aloud the second half of the story.
- Ask the class to think of another character trait to describe Linden.
- Select one of the students' suggestions to add to the organizer.
- Ask them to find textual evidence that shows Linden displaying the trait.
- Again, select one of their suggestions to add to the organizer.
- Repeat this process for the third box.
- Beginning: Show a list of character traits they already know with visuals to reference while they choose additional traits for Linden.
- Intermediate: Allow ELs to summarize the story and give examples of some character traits they may see in the text.
Independent working time(15 minutes)
- Distribute copies of the organizer to the class.
- Give each student about 10 minutes to complete his wheel for Tony, Mom, or Dad.
- Circulate the room and provide assistance when needed.
- Beginning: Distribute a scaffolded graphic organizer that asks students to fill in the blanks with pertinent information about the character of their choice.
- Allow them to say their answers in their L1 or L2 before completing the organizer.
- Intermediate: Allow students to work in pairs or groups to brainstorm some character traits for each character before completing the graphic organizer.
- Enrichment: Advanced students can be asked to fill out an additional graphic organizer about another character.
- Support: Struggling students can be asked to fill out one or two sectors of their organizer instead of three.
An interactive whiteboard may be used for displaying and iflling our your graphic organizer.
- Collect the organizers at the end of the independent exercise.
- Review them later to assess student comprehension of the lesson topic.
- Beginning: Provide a paragraph frame with word choices to complete their writing assignment.
- Intermediate: Allow ELs to discuss their graphic organizers and adjust their answers after meeting in groups.
Review and closing(5 minutes)
- Ask some review questions, such as: What is an example of a character trait? What isn't? Why do you think it's important to be able to identify character traits in a story?
- Beginning: Allow ELs to answer questions in their L1.
- Intermediate: Ask them to choose from the list of options and provide examples for their choice using sentence frames or stems.