Activity Overview

A common use for Storyboard That is to help students create a plot diagram of the events from a novel. Not only is this a great way to teach the parts of the plot, but it reinforces major events and help students develop greater understanding of literary structures, such as five act structure.

Students can create a storyboard capturing the narrative arc in a novel with a six-cell storyboard containing the major parts of the plot diagram. For each cell, have students create a scene that follows the story in sequence using: Exposition, Conflict, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, and Resolution..

Teachers may wish for students to collaborate on this activity which is possible with Storyboard That's Real Time Collaboration feature. This can help cut down on the time it takes to complete the entire storyboard while also helping students to develop communication, self-management and leadership skills. Teachers can enable collaboration for the assignment and students can either choose their partner(s) or have one chosen for them. It is suggested that since the Plot Diagram's storyboard is 6 cells, it is best if completed by students in groups of 2, 3 or 6.

Example Plot Diagram for “The Most Dangerous Game”


Setting: Caribbean Sea/Ship Trap Island. Rainsford, a big game hunter, is traveling to the Amazon by boat. He falls overboard and finds himself stranded on Ship Trap Island.

Major Inciting Conflict

On the Island, Rainsford finds a large home where Ivan, a servant, and General Zaroff, a Russian aristocrat, live. They take Rainsford in. However, he soon learns that to leave, he must win a game where he is the prey! General Zaroff’s "most dangerous game" is hunting humans.

Rising Action

Rainsford must survive for three days. He sets three traps to outwit the general, Ivan, and his bloodthirsty hounds.


Cornered, Rainsford jumps off a cliff, into the sea. He survives the fall and waits for Zaroff in his house.

Falling Action

Rainsford ambushes Zaroff, and the men duel. Presumably, Zaroff is killed and fed to the hounds.


The story ends with Rainsford saying he has never slept more soundly in his life.

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 plot diagram of “The Most Dangerous Game”.

  1. Separate the story into the Exposition, Conflict, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, and Resolution.
  2. Create an image that represents an important moment or set of events for each of the story components.
  3. Write a description of each of the steps in the plot diagram.

Lesson Plan Reference

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/RL/9-10/5] Analyze how an author’s choices concerning how to structure a text, order events within it (e.g., parallel plots), and manipulate time (e.g., pacing, flashbacks) create such effects as mystery, tension, or surprise


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

Plot Diagram Rubric (Grades 9-12)
Create a plot diagram for the story using Exposition, Conflict, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, and Resolution.
25 Points
21 Points
17 Points
Try Again
13 Points
Descriptive and Visual Elements
Cells have many descriptive elements, and provide the reader with a vivid representation.
Cells have many descriptive elements, but flow of cells may have been hard to understand.
Cells have few descriptive elements, or have visuals that make the work confusing.
Cells have few or no descriptive elements.
Textables have three or fewer spelling/grammar errors.
Textables have four or fewer spelling/grammar errors.
Textables have five or fewer spelling/grammar errors.
Textables have six or more spelling/grammar errors.
Evidence of Effort
Work is well written and carefully thought out. Student has done both peer and teacher editing.
Work is well written and carefully thought out. Student has either teacher or peer editing, but not both.
Student has done neither peer, nor teacher editing.
Work shows no evidence of any effort.
All parts of the plot are included in the diagram.
All parts of the plot are included in the diagram, but one or more is confusing.
Parts of the plot are missing from the diagram, and/or some aspects of the diagram make the plot difficult to follow.
Almost all of the parts of the plot are missing from the diagram, and/or some aspects of the diagram make the plot very difficult to follow.

How To Analyze the Interaction of Setting With the Characters in “The Most Dangerous Game”


Determine the Important Setting Elements

Encourage the students to take note of certain features of the scene, such as the cliffs, Zaroff's castle, the deep rainforest, and the island's overall seclusion. Students can visualize these settings with the help of pictures and if appropriate, teachers can show some live-action or animated adaptations of the story for a better understanding of the setting.


Discuss the Effects of Isolation

An important aspect of the plot is how remote Ship-Trap Island is. The absence of neighboring settlements or authorities adds to the feeling of isolation and peril. Ask the students if these elements contribute to the thrill and suspense of the story and if each element of the setting acts as a symbol for real life.


Examine the Impact on Storyline

Ask the students to examine the impact of the setting on the storyline. For instance, what is the role of the island in the development of the story? Students can also discuss the progression of the story if the setting was a little different such as a big mansion instead of an island. Encourage the students to discuss different directions and possibilities of the story and how each possibility represents a specific idea and perspective.


Analyze the Characters’ Journeys

Help the students analyze the journeys of different characters throughout the story and how the setting contributes to the story. For instance, how does the island create obstacles for the protagonist and give a sense of thrill to the antagonist? Students can use graphic organizers to organize this information and create a logical analysis.


Reflect and Summarize

Encourage the students to summarize all the discussion points and express their opinions regarding the discussion. Students can review all the information and use the information to present a logical analysis.

Frequently Asked Questions About Plot Diagram of “The Most Dangerous Game”

What does the phrase "The Most Dangerous Game" mean in the context of the story?

The game of Zaroff hunting people is referenced in the title "The Most Dangerous Game." The stakes are really high in this game; if Rainsford is discovered, he will be murdered. The phrase "the most dangerous game is the one we play against ourselves" is also implied by the title. The resolution provides the irony for the ending of Zaroff as he was killed because of his own game.

What is the most tense point in the story?

The scene in "The Most Dangerous Game" where Rainsford is surrounded by Zaroff and his dogs is the pinnacle. There are only two things left for him to do: leap from a cliff into the sea or get murdered. Rainsford manages to survive by jumping. This scene increases the suspense for the readers and paves the way for the falling action and resolution.

This Activity is Part of Many Teacher Guides

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