Activity Overview

Creating a plot diagram not only helps students learn the parts of the plot, but it reinforces major events and helps students develop a 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 Ivy's story in Echo. Students should identify major turning points in Ivy's story such as the Exposition, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, and Resolution


Ivy's Story

Exposition: Ivy Maria Lopez lived in California with her mother, father, and brother Fernando in 1942. Her parents were migrant farmers and moved often. When WWII broke out, Fernando went to fight and the family missed him. Then Ivy learned they'd be moving to a farm where they may own land after the lease is up. Her parents were thrilled, but Ivy was sad to leave her favorite teacher, best friend, and the opportunity to play in her school band with her new special harmonica.

Conflict: Ivy’s family moved to the new farm which they leased from the Yamamoto family. They had been forced to a concentration camp because of their Japanese heritage. The Lopez family cared for the farm in their absence so the Yamamotos wouldn't lose their property. Ivy looked forward to starting school with her new friend Susan Ward. However, she realized that she was forced to go to a separate school because of her Mexican heritage!

Rising Action: Susan's two brothers fought in the war and one had been killed in action. Susan's father was convinced that the Yamamotos were Japanese spies and insisted on searching the house for clues. Rather than find signs of espionage, they found a room full of instruments that were being stored for safe keeping for dozens of Japanese American families forced to go to the concentration camps.

Climax: Ivy joined the school band and her teacher encouraged her to take up the flute. Kenny Yamamoto, who had joined the army, came to visit the farm to sign papers for the Lopez's lease. He was grateful they would care for the farm in his family's absence. Ivy felt compelled to give Kenny her special harmonica when he left for war. One day on her way home, she and Susan spotted a telegram messenger at her door, which meant bad news!

Falling Action: Luckily, Fernando was only wounded in action. He came home and eventually married a teacher from the combined school that Ivy's parents and many others worked to desegregate. The Yamamotos came home after the war and were able to regain their farm. Kenny Yamamoto had also miraculously survived the war all thanks to the lucky harmonica that Ivy had given him! Ivy pursued her passion for music and became an accomplished flute player.

Resolution: At the end of the story, in 1951, Ivy is a new young flute player for the Empire Philharmonic in New York. She is giving a performance in Carnegie Hall and in the audience cheering her on is her dear friend, Kenny Yamamoto.

Template and Class Instructions

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

Due Date:

Objective: Create a visual plot diagram for Ivy's story in Echo.

Student Instructions:

  1. Separate the story into the Title, Exposition, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, and Resolution.
  2. Create an image that represents an important moment or set of events for each of the story components using appropriate scenes, characters and items.
  3. Write a description of each of the steps in the plot diagram.

Lesson Plan Reference

Common Core Standards
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/6/3] Describe how a particular story’s or drama’s plot unfolds in a series of episodes as well as how the characters respond or change as the plot moves toward a resolution
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/5/5] Explain how a series of chapters, scenes, or stanzas fits together to provide the overall structure of a particular story, drama, or poem.


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

Plot Diagram Rubric
Create a visual Plot Diagram that summarizes the story. The storyboard should have six cells: Title, Exposition, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, and Resolution. Below each cell, type in a description of that part of the story.
Proficient Emerging Beginning
Cells include images that help to tell the story and do not get in the way of understanding. Descriptions match the images.
Descriptions do not always match the images.
Descriptions are missing or do not match the images.
Each of the six cells represents a different part of the story. The cells are in order from beginning to end.
Two cells or fewer are out of order, or the storyboard is missing important information.
Important information is missing and/or three or more cells are out of order.
Spelling and Grammar
Spelling and grammar is mostly accurate. Mistakes do not get in the way of understanding.
Spelling is very inaccurate and hinders full understanding.
Text is difficult to understand.

*(This Will Start a 2-Week Free Trial - No Credit Card Needed)
© 2024 - Clever Prototypes, LLC - All rights reserved.
StoryboardThat is a trademark of Clever Prototypes, LLC, and Registered in U.S. Patent and Trademark Office