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Activity Overview

An exceptional way to help your students follow a story is to have them track the events from it. Not only is this a great way to teach the parts of a plot, it also reinforces major events, and helps students develop greater understanding of literary structures. For a novel that has multiple plots, this is an excellent way for students to keep them all straight. At the elementary level, there are numerous ways to plot the parts of a story.

Teachers can ask students to create a storyboard that captures the concept of the narrative arc in a novel by using any of the examples which come with templates found on the Parts of a Story article.

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 Event Arch of Holes.

  1. Separate the story into the Introduction, Problem, Events, Climax, Problem is Resolved, and Conclusion.
  2. Create an image that represents an important moment or set of events for each of the story parts.
  3. Write a description of each of the steps in the Event Arch.

Lesson Plan Reference

Common Core Standards
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/4/1] Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/4/2] Determine a theme of a story, drama, or poem from details in the text; summarize the text.
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/4/3] Describe in depth a character, setting, or event in a story or drama, drawing on specific details in the text (e.g., a character's thoughts, words, or actions).


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

Event Arch Rubric
Create a visual Event Arch that summarizes the story. The storyboard should have six cells: Introduction, Problem, Events, Climax, Problem is Resolved, and Conclusion. 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.

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