"Young Goodman Brown" Plot Diagram
Lesson Plan Reference
Grade Level 9-10
Difficulty Level 2 (Reinforcing / Developing)
Type of Assignment Individual or Partner
Type of Activity: Plot Diagrams and Narrative ArcsCommon Core Standards
- [ELA-Literacy/RL/9-10/1] Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from 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
A common activity for students is to create a plot diagram of the events from a story. Not only is this a great way to teach the parts of a plot but to reinforce major events and help students develop greater understanding of literary structures.
Students can create a storyboard that captures the concept of the narrative arc in a story by creating a six-cell storyboard which contains the major parts of the plot diagram. For each cell, have students create a scene that follows the story in a sequence using Exposition, Conflict, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, and Resolution.
Example "Young Goodman Brown" Plot Diagram
The story begins when Goodman must say goodbye to his wife, Faith, to go on an errand. Faith tells Brown that she is not comfortable staying by herself and wished he would not go.
Major Inciting Conflict
Brown leaves without stating the purpose of the journey, yet the reader infers that the reason is related to dark matters. On his way he encounters the devil who attempts to woo him.
Despite numerous persuasive tactics, Brown refuses the devil; until he thinks he hears Faith’s scream. Using the devil’s staff, Brown is transported to the devil's forest ceremony.
At the ceremony the fire lights the faces of good pious people in his community: the Deacon Gookin, Goody Cloyse, and others. Suddenly, he realizes that Faith is among them. As he tells her to resist the devil and look towards the heavens he is transported back through the forest alone.
The next morning, Brown returns to the village unaware if what he experienced was real or a dream. He sees the same members of the community that were at the fire and cries out defaming them in wickedness.
For the rest of his life, he is changed, trusting no one, especially not his wife, Faith.
(These instructions are completely customizable. After clicking "Copy Assignment", change the description of the assignment in your Dashboard.)
Create a visual plot diagram of "Young Goodman Brown".
- Separate the story into the Exposition, Conflict, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, and Resolution.
- Create an image that represents an important moment or set of events for each of the story components.
- Write a description of each of the steps in the plot diagram.
(Modify this basic rubric by clicking the link below. You can also create your own on Quick Rubric.)