Activity Overview

When reading a story like Beowulf, students will come across unfamiliar words, some of which are no longer commonly used if at all. Many students struggle with these odd expressions. A great way to help students out and engage them with these new words is to have them create vocabulary boards that use Old English vocabulary. However, getting students to use them in context before reading is an excellent way to cultivate the comprehension of vocabulary. You can provide students with a list of words, or if students create them while they read, they can select their own words to investigate!

  • Mead Hall - A large building with a single room constructed for lords to hold feasts in.
  • Kennings - Poetic phrases consisting of compound metaphors.
  • Scop - Anglo-Saxon minstrel who tells the story.

Template and Class Instructions

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Copy Activity", update the instructions on the Edit Tab of the assignment.)

Student Instructions

Create a visual vocabulary board for Beowulf.

  1. Use the template provided by your teacher.
  2. Identify three words used in the text.
  3. Define and illustrate each word.

Lesson Plan Reference

Common Core Standards
  • [ELA-Literacy/SL/9-10/6] Adapt speech to a variety of contexts and tasks, demonstrating command of formal English when indicated or appropriate. (See grades 9–10 Language standards 1 and 3 here for specific expectations.)
  • [ELA-Literacy/L/9-10/3] Apply knowledge of language to understand how language functions in different contexts, to make effective choices for meaning or style, and to comprehend more fully when reading or listening
  • [ELA-Literacy/L/9-10/5] Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and nuances in word meanings


(You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)

Shakespearean Vocabulary Rubric Template
Define, illustrate, and give an example sentence for Shakespearean vocabulary
Proficient Emerging Beginning
Word meanings are clear and correct.
Word meanings are mostly correct, but some are unclear or incorrect.
Most word meanings are unclear or incorrect.
Vocabulary words are used correctly in the example sentences in both meaning and context.
Most words are used correctly, but some of the vocabulary words are used awkwardly or in the wrong context.
Most vocabulary words are not used correctly in the example sentences.
Comic Visualization
Storyboard cell clearly illustrates the meaning of the vocabulary word.
The storyboard cell relates to the meaning of the vocabulary word, but is difficult to understand.
The storyboard cell does not clearly relate to the meaning of the vocabulary word.

*(This Will Start a 2-Week Free Trial - No Credit Card Needed)
© 2023 - Clever Prototypes, LLC - All rights reserved.
StoryboardThat is a trademark of Clever Prototypes, LLC, and Registered in U.S. Patent and Trademark Office