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Activity Overview

Storyboards can be used, as students are reading, to keep a character reference log. A character map allows students to recall important information on characters. When reading a novel, little attributes often return to become an important plot details. Through the use of character mapping students will catch this information, and will be able to follow the fine points which make reading more enjoyable.

By clicking "Use This Assignment", both the example above and a blank template will copy into your account. Feel free to use them as is or edit them to make it easier. (Or harder for more advanced classes!) The easiest way to use this is to print it as worksheets for your students to complete while reading.

For The Outsiders, a character map helps students remember who belongs to each gang. It also provides a reference for discussing how each was involved in the fighting.

The Outsiders Characters

Ponyboy Curtis Protagonist, GreaserDarrel "Darry" Curtis The oldest brother, gave up a promising football career to take care of his brothers after parents' death
Sodapop Curtis Brother of Ponyboy and Darrel, GreaserTwo-Bit Mathews Greaser, known for his switchblade
Steve Randle Friends with Sodapop, thinks Ponyboy is annoyingDallas “Dally” Winston Toughest Greaser
Johnny Cade Ponyboy's best friendSandy Sodapop's girlfriend
Cherry Valance Soc girl, dating BobMarcia Friend of Cherry
Bob Sheldon Soc, dies in fightPaul Holden Soc who challenges Darrel
Jerry Wood A man that looks down on the gangs, despite Johnny and Ponyboy saving the children from the burning churchTim Shepard Leader of a different group of Greasers, friend of Dallas
Curly Shepard Tim's tough younger brother, has a criminal record at the age of 15Mr. Syme Ponyboy's English teacher

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 character map for the major characters in The Outsiders.

  1. Identify the major characters in The Outsiders and type their names into the different title boxes.
  2. Choose a character from the "1900s" tab 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 boxes for Age, Characteristics, Relatives, and Gang/Friends by adding textables.

Lesson Plan Reference

Common Core Standards
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/7/3] Analyze how particular elements of a story or drama interact (e.g., how setting shapes the characters or plot)
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/7/6] Analyze how an author develops and contrasts the points of view of different characters or narrators in a text
  • [ELA-Literacy/RL/7/9] Compare and contrast a fictional portrayal of a time, place, or character and a historical account of the same period as a means of understanding how authors of fiction use or alter history


(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.
33 Points
25 Points
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.
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.

This Activity is Part of Many Teacher Guides

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