Creating a plot diagram not only helps students learn the parts of the plot, but it reinforces major events and help students develop greater understanding of literary structures. Students can create a storyboard capturing the narrative arc in a work with a six-cell storyboard containing the major parts of the plot diagram. In this activity, students will create a visual plot diagram of major events in Dragonwings. Students should identify major turning points in the novel such as the Exposition, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, and Resolution. Dragonwings has many different subplots, so students may interpret these parts very differently. The example given is just one way to interpret the plot.
Exposition: It is the early 1900s, and Moon Shadow, a young boy of just 7 years old, goes to live with his father, who he hasn’t met, in America. As Chinese immigrants in San Francisco, Moon Shadow, his father, and their extended family face many challenges while trying to run a successful laundromat.
Rising Action: The devastating San Francisco Earthquake of 1906 hits the area and there is massive destruction.
Climax: Windrider completes his airplane and everyone shows up to help him push it up the hill and watch him fly.
Falling Action: After a few minutes of flight, the plane crashes, leaving Windrider with some broken bones, but a joyful heart.
Resolution: The Company makes Windrider a partner in the business so that he can bring his wife over to America.
(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Use This Assignment With My Students", update the instructions on the Edit Tab of the assignment.)
Objective: Create a visual plot diagram of Dragonwings.
Grade Level 6-8
Difficulty Level 3 (Developing to Mastery)
Type of Assignment Individual
Type of Activity: Plot Diagrams and Narrative ArcsCommon Core Standards