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Activity Overview

Understanding a book's point of view is something that helps students better understand the story, and how the POV can differ from the narrator. The narrator for The Book Thief is an unusual choice and one that is interesting for students to analyze. Teachers can discuss the difference between a first person and third person narrator as well as the differences between limited and omniscient. Death uniquely describes his own experiences but is also able to intimately describe the thoughts and feelings of some of the characters like Liesel. After discussing Death and his role in the story, students will create a storyboard that describes what type of narrator he is, his differing perspectives, as well as give evidence from the text to support their claims.

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 storyboard analyzing the Narrator, Death's, point of view in The Book Thief.

Student Instructions:

  1. Click "Start Assignment".
  2. Identify the point of view of the narrator, Death.
  3. In 1-3 cells, use evidence from the text to describe the narrator's point of view.
  4. Add appropriate characters, scenes and items to illustrate your points.
  5. Write a description for each cell.

Lesson Plan Reference

Common Core Standards
  • [ELA-Literacy/RH/9-10/3] Analyze in detail a series of events described in a text; determine whether earlier events caused later ones or simply preceded them.
  • [ELA-LITERACY/CCRA/R/1] Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.
  • [ELA-LITERACY/CCRA/R/7] Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse media and formats, including visually and quantitatively, as well as in words.
  • [ELA-LITERACY/CCRA/R/9] Analyze how two or more texts address similar themes or topics in order to build knowledge or to compare the approaches the authors take.


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

Points of View in a Novel
Identify the point(s) of view in the novel:
First person point of view. First person is when “I” am telling the story. The character is in the story, relating his or her experiences directly.
Second person point of view. The story is told to “you.” This POV is not common in fiction, but it’s still good to know (it is common in nonfiction).
Third person point of view, limited. The story is about “he” or “she.” This is the most common point of view in commercial fiction. The narrator is outside of the story and relating the experiences of a character.
Third person point of view, omniscient. The story is still about “he” or “she,” but the narrator has full access to the thoughts and experiences of all characters in the story.

Create a storyboard that identifies each point of view and describes each using a written explanation and an illustration.
25 Points
19 Points
13 Points
Identify the Points of View
The student identified all points of view the author employed in the novel correctly.
The student identified most of the points of view.
The student did not identify the correct point of view,
Written Explanations
Text descriptions clearly explain the points of view used in the novel and described the differences in their perspectives.
Text descriptions explain the points of view, but may lack clarity.
Text descriptions do not accurately describe the points of view.
Storyboard Images
Illustrations show scenes clearly connected to the point of view and perspective described and use visual elements to show a difference between perspectives.
Illustrations show scenes connected to the point of view and perspective described but may be simplistic or lack detail.
Scenes do not clearly describe the points of view employed in the novel.
Effort and Editing
Work is complete, thorough, and neat. Spelling and grammar are correct.
Most of the sections of the storyboard were at least attempted and work is presentable. The text contains some errors in spelling and/or grammar.
Storyboard is unfinished and/or disorganized. The text contains many errors in spelling and/or grammar.

This Activity is Part of Many Teacher Guides

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