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Lesson: Types of Characters in Short Stories


1. Students will understand the different types of characters in fiction.

2. Students will be able to identify character types.


RL.11-12.3. Analyze the impact of the author’s choices regarding how to develop and relate elements of a story or drama (e.g., where a story is set, how the action is ordered, how the characters are introduced and developed).


1. Powerpoint on different types of characters (5-10min) (Attached)

2. I will now read you the book The Boy With Pink Hair by Perez Hilton. Listen for the different types of characters. How do the author’s choices help develop the characters? When I have finished, I will show you who I think the protagonist, antagonist, secondary and background characters were. You will be doing the same thing shortly, so watch closely! (10 - 15 min)

3. My poster. (5 - 10min) I thought it was very interesting how Perez Hilton did not give the characters names, but rather gave them all characteristics that we could all relate to. The pink hair could be your own quirk. The reader can really connect to the story. The author made it clear who was the focus of the story by letting us see that the protagonist was being bullied, and the antagonist was clearly doing the bullying. The secondary characters helped the antagonist overcome his bully, and the background characters added slight details to the larger crowd scenes.

4. Please pair up with your 3 o’clock partner. Then, come select your children’s book from the front! Your task is to identify each type of character: protagonist, antagonist, secondary and background characters. Please identify at least 2 specific characteristics that explain why that character fits the type. (20-25min)

a. You and your partner will create one poster that explains your thinking. Why did you identify these characters and what did the author do to make it clear for you as the reader. Use mine as an example. Please be creative and draw your own image! [RL.11-12.3.]

5. Students will then present their small poster and children’s story to the class.


a. If we do not finish in class – we will continue this tomorrow

6. Assessment:

a. Students present the information from their children’s book and poster.

b. On an exit slip please write down an example of a protagonist and an antagonist from your favorite movie, book, or tv show. Write 3 sentences that explain why this character is the protagonist or the antagonist.

7. HOMEWORK: For tomorrow, bring a printed image of a fictional character from your favorite television show, movie, or book.