https://www.storyboardthat.com/lesson-plans/frankenstein-by-mary-shelley/tragic-hero

Activity Overview


Frankenstein is full of important literary elements for students to explore. One of these elements is the tragic hero, a protagonist who seems to be ill-fated, and destined for doom. In this novel, Frankenstein and his monster both fit this archetype.

The Greek philosopher, Aristotle, first articulated the specific attributes or principles of a tragic hero. In the storyboard example, the creator has focused on Victor Frankenstein as a tragic hero. The finished product outlines each of Aristotle's principles with a detailed explanation of the specific attributes and how they apply to Dr. Frankenstein. Students could choose to examine Frankenstein’s monster instead, or compare the two side by side in a grid layout


Example Tragic Hero Activity for Victor Frankenstein

ATTRIBUTEDEFINITIONEXAMPLE FROM TEXT
Hamartia Flaw that Causes the Hero's Downfall Frankenstein’s blind ambition leads him to investigate science that is best left alone.
Hubris Excessive Pride Victor believes he can conquer death with science, recklessly playing “God” and ignoring the natural order.
Peripeteia Reversal of Fortune Victor thinks the monster is gone but returns home to find his brother, William, killed and the creature lurking.
Anagnorisis Hero Makes a Critical Discovery Victor realizes his monster killed his new bride, Elizabeth, and this is what was meant by, “I shall be with you on your wedding-night.”
Nemesis Unavoidable Fate Once Victor brought the monster to life, his fate was inextricably intertwined with it, to the ends of the earth, and the ends of their lives.
Catharsis Pity or Fear the Audience Feels After Hero's Fall In the end, the reader is left feeling pity for Victor, and fear that they too could suffer the consequences of hubris. Captain Walton, a surrogate for the reader, heeds the lesson and sails for home.

Template and Class Instructions

(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Use This Assignment With My Students", update the instructions on the Edit Tab of the assignment.)



Student Instructions

Create a storyboard that shows how either Victor Frankenstein or his monster can be considered a tragic hero.


  1. Identify events of the novel or characteristics of Frankenstein/the monster that fit into Aristotelian attributes of a tragic hero.
  2. Illustrate examples for Hamartia, Hubris, Peripeteia, Anagnorisis, Nemesis, and Catharsis.
  3. Write a short description below each cell that specifically relates Frankenstein/the monster as a tragic hero.
  4. Save often!

Lesson Plan Reference

Grade Level 9-10

Difficulty Level 4 (Difficult / Complex)

Type of Assignment Individual or Group

Type of Activity: Tragic Hero

Common 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
  • [ELA-Literacy/W/9-10/1] Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence

Rubric

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


Tragic Hero Rubric Template
Create a storyboard that shows how the protagonist can be considered a tragic hero using Aristotle's Characteristics
Proficient Emerging Beginning Needs Improvement
Tragic Hero Characteristics
The six tragic hero characteristics are correctly identified and portrayed from the story. The explanation provided explains how the scenes depict each characteristic, and shows effective analysis.
Four or five tragic hero characteristics are correctly identified and portrayed from the story, or some of the elements may not be identified correctly. The explanations give context to the scene, but may be minimal, and there is some attempt at analysis.
Two or three tragic hero characteristics are correctly identified and portrayed from the story, or most of the elements are inaccurately depicted. The quotes and/or explanations are too minimal.
One or fewer tragic hero characteristics are correctly identified and portrayed from the story, or most of the elements are inaccurately depicted. The quotes and/or explanations are minimal or missing altogether.
Artistic Depictions
The art chosen to depict the scenes are accurate to the work of literature. Time and care is taken to ensure that the scenes are neat, eye-catching, and creative.
The art chosen to depict the scenes should be accurate, but there may be some liberties taken that distract from the assignment. Scene constructions are neat, and meet basic expectations.
The art chosen to depict the scenes is inappropriate. Scene constructions are messy and may create some confusion.
The art chosen to depict the scenes is too limited or incomplete.
English Conventions
Ideas are organized. There are few or no grammatical, mechanical, or spelling errors.
Ideas are mostly organized. There are some grammatical, mechanical, or spelling errors.
Ideas may be disorganized or misplaced. Lack of control over grammar, mechanics, and spelling reflect a lack of proofreading.
Storyboard text is difficult to understand.


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