Romeo and Juliet Five Act Structure

This Storyboard That activity is part of the lesson plans for Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet


Five Act Structure - Romeo and Juliet

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Activity Overview


In this activity, students will capture the concept of the Five Act Structure by creating a six cell storyboard that illustrates key events in each act. For each cell, have students create a scene that follows the acts in order: Prologue, Conflict, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, and Denouement.


Five Act Structure | 5 Act Structure
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Romeo and Juliet Five Act Structure Example

Prologue (Exposition)

Like a modern day movie trailer, the prologue for The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet gives the audience a preview of events to come, and give us insight into the characters, setting, and background.

Two households, both alike in dignity, In fair Verona, where we lay our scene, From ancient grudge break to new mutiny, Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean. From forth the fatal loins of these two foes A pair of star-cross'd lovers take their life; Whose misadventured piteous overthrows Do with their death bury their parents' strife. The fearful passage of their death-mark'd love, And the continuance of their parents' rage, Which, but their children's end, nought could remove, Is now the two hours' traffic of our stage; The which if you with patient ears attend, What here shall miss, our toil shall strive to mend.

William Shakespeare The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet

Act 2: Rising Action

The two lovers meet but cannot be together because of their families' long feud.


Act 3: Climax

After crashing the Capulet party, Tybalt goes after the Montague crew and kills Mercutio. To avenge his friend, Romeo duels with and kills Tybalt - Juliet's cousin. ​ Romeo is banished, but before he goes he gives Juliet a proper wedding night!​


Act 4: Falling Action

Juliet's father requests that she marries Count Paris. However, to escape a second wedding she and Friar Lawrence concoct a plan to make it appear as if she dies. By taking a sleeping potion!


Denouement

The conclusion of The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet culminates with the Friar's version of the lovers' story. Friar Lawrence and the Nurse expound the truth to the Prince, the Capulets, and to the Montagues. In the resolution, the sad tone and moral of the story is evident as the two families agree to reconcile and erect monuments in the lovers' honor.




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Student Instructions

Create a visual plot diagram of Romeo and Juliet.


  1. Click "Start Assignment".
  2. Separate the play into the Prologue/Exposition, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, and Denouement.
  3. Create an image that represents an important moment or set of events for each of the acts.
  4. Write a description of each of the steps in the plot diagram.

Five Act Structure Template

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