Character Changes…Getting students to think more deeply about a text than just at the surface level. I don’t want my students to just learn about the beginning-middle-end of stories, although that is the first step. But I want them to think and connect with the characters within the text and how the characters change. Some characters are not the same through out the story, but events happen to them and the characters change because of these events. I also want them to learn to provide evidence of their thinking.
So to help my students learn this I created this Character Changes Foldable. My second and third graders read books where the characters went through a change in character traits from the beginning to the end. We discussed these and what events (evidence) from the stories caused these trait changes. I will have to say that I was very pleased at how perceptive these students were to the traits and what caused the characters to change! I LOVE it when I can get my students to engage at a deep level with our text- one of those yeah, you are getting this and you are good at it feelings!
The students started out listing common, surface words like mad and sad. But I was surprised how quickly they were able to move on to descriptives like worried, nervous, freaked out, lonely… One student who deeply fears reading in front of others but will participate in discussions about thinking is the one who came up with “freaked out” for the character who was a new kid in school that loses his class and doesn’t know where to go. This student was a new student to our school this year. Don’t you know he connected deeply to how the character felt in our story?
If you want to use this Character Changes Foldable with your students, you can download it free. Just click here to be taken to my store to get it.