Plot Diagram | Don Quixote Summary
Lesson Plan Reference
Grade Level 9-12
Difficulty Level 2 (Reinforcing / Developing)
Type of Assignment Individual or Partner
Type of Activity: Plot Diagrams and Narrative ArcsCommon Core Standards
- [ELA-Literacy/RL/9-10/2] Determine a theme or central idea of a text and analyze in detail its development over the course of the text, including how it emerges and is shaped and refined by specific details; provide an objective summary of the text
- [ELA-Literacy/RL/9-10/3] Analyze how complex characters (e.g., those with multiple or conflicting motivations) develop over the course of a text, interact with other characters, and advance the plot or develop the theme
A common activity for students is to create a plot diagram of the events from a novel. Not only is this a great way to teach the parts of a plot, but to reinforce major events and help students develop greater understanding of literary structures.
Students can create a storyboard that captures the concept of the narrative arc in a story by creating a six-cell storyboard which contains the major parts of the plot diagram. For each cell, have students create a scene that follows the novel in sequence using Exposition, Conflict, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, and Resolution.
Don Quixote Plot Diagram Example
At the beginning of the novel, the reader is introduced to Alonso Quijano, a middle aged man who enjoys reading books about knights and their deeds. After becoming so engrossed in these fantasies he changes his name to Don Quixote and decides to set off on as a knight-errant.
Major Inciting Conflict
Don Quixote sets out, with Sancho Panza, on his quests. In a world no longer ruled by the values of knighthood, Quixote’s chivalric nature is at odds with almost everyone, and he appears delusional.
Quixote encounters many people. At first his chivalric values lead him to help others, but he has an increasing tendency to get involved in the business of others, and not pay his debts.
In a twist of fate, Quixote accidentally reunites two bereaved couples: Cardenio with Lucinda, and Ferdinand with Dorothea, who were torn apart by Ferdinand’s deceptions. The four lovers reunite at an inn where Don Quixote sleeps, dreaming that he is battling a giant.
Two friends of Quixote’s capture him and forcibly take him home in a cage. Quixote, captured, believes that he has been enchanted.
On the way to Quixote’s home, the priest and barber are confronted by Sancho who wants them to free Quixote. The barber threatens to lock Sancho in the cage also and Sancho backs down. In the end, the canon and the priest discuss books on chivalry saying they are ridiculous lies, perhaps to crush the notions that got Quixote into his madness.
(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Copy Assignment", change the description of the assignment in your Dashboard.)
Create a visual plot diagram of Don Quixote.
- Separate the story into the Exposition, Conflict, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, and Resolution.
- Create an image that represents an important moment or set of events for each of the story components.
- Write a description of each of the steps in the plot diagram.
(Modify this basic rubric by clicking the link below. You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)