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Activity Overview


As students read, a storyboard can serve as a helpful character reference log. This log (also called a character map) allows students to recall relevant information about important characters. When reading a novel, small attributes and details frequently become important as the plot progresses. With character mapping, students will record this information, helping them follow along and catch the subtleties which make reading more enjoyable!

Use a character map to help track the different pilgrims that are discussed in “The General Prologue”. Have the students provide the character’s physical/physiognomic traits, internal character traits, and a quote for support! For the purpose of this sample, we’ve chosen our favorite five. Split your students up and have them focus on just one or a few pilgrims, or have them track all 30!


Canterbury Tales Characters

Physical/Physiognomic Traits Internal Character Traits Quote
The Wife of Bath Aging, deaf in one ear, very finely dressed, has gaps in her teeth She is confident, congenial, and an expert in love and romance “In felaweshipe wel koude she laughe and carpe./ Of remedies of love she knew per chaunce,/ For she koude of that art the olde daunce.”
The Miller Stout, with big muscles, red beard, nostrils full of black hairs, a huge, loud mouth with a tooth missing; carries a sword Dishonest, as he sells his product for three times the price he’s supposed to; uncouth; debaucherous “His mouth as greet was as a greet forneys. He was a janglere and a goliardeys, And that was moost of synne and harlotries. Wel koude he stelen corn and tollen thries; And yet he hadde a thombe of gold, pardee.”
The Prioress Has very good manners; exquisite nose; gray eyes; small, red mouth Dainty and proper; compassionate; modest; good heart “But soore wepte she if oon of hem were deed, Or if men smoot it with a yerde smerte; And al was conscience and tendre herte.”
The Cook Has a defect: an open sore oozing from his chin Expert in cooking “But soore wepte she if oon of hem were deed, Or if men smoot it with a yerde smerte; And al was conscience and tendre herte.”
The Knight He dresses in a subdued style, he carries himself with dignity and he never has an unkind expression on his face He is humble, a worthy knight, and perhaps the best knight in the world “And everemoore he hadde a soveryn prys. And though that he were worthy, he was wys, And of his port as meeke as is a mayde. He nevere yet no vileynye ne sayde In al his lyf unto no maner wight.”
Lesson Plan Reference

Grade Level 9-12

Difficulty Level 2 (Reinforcing / Developing)

Type of Assignment Individual or Partner

Type of Activity: Character Map

Common Core Standards
  • [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/RL/9-10/6] Analyze a particular point of view or cultural experience reflected in a work of literature from outside the United States, drawing on a wide reading of world literature
  • [ELA-Literacy/W/9-10/6] Use technology, including the Internet, to produce, publish, and update individual or shared writing products, taking advantage of technology’s capacity to link to other information and to display information flexibly and dynamically


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 character map for the major characters.


  1. Identify the major characters in The Canterbury Tales and type their names into the different title boxes.
  2. Choose a character to represent each of the literary characters.
    • Select colors and a pose appropriate to story and character traits.
  3. Choose a scene or background that makes sense for the character.
  4. Fill in the Textables for Physical/Physiognomic Traits, Internal Character Traits, Quote.
  5. Save and submit the assignment.


Rubric

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



Character Map Template
Create a character map of the characters in the story. Put the character's name in the title boxes and choose a character and scene to represent each one. As you read, take notes on the characters by answering the questions.
Proficient
33 Points
Emerging
25 Points
Beginning
17 Points
Character Picture & Scene
The characters and scenes are both appropriate for the book's characters.
Many of the characters and scenes match the book's characters.
More than half of the characters and scenes do not match the characters in the book.
Accuracy of Notes
Most of the information of the notes is correct.
Many of the notes have correct information, but some are incorrect or missing.
Less than half of the information of the notes is correct and relevant.
Effort
Work is complete, thorough, and neat.
Most of the sections of the character map were at least attempted and work is presentable.
Character map is unfinished and/or disorganized.




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