After reading about this type of activity a few years ago I finally got to introduce it to a class.
Yesterday an English class of year 7 boys worked on this task that required them to consider the characters in their novels. This approach worked very well as an English class activity. It focussed our Year 7 boys on the characters in their novels. The boys had been working in literature circle groups for almost a term. Each student had to create a profile for one of the characters in the books they have been reading. Some of the data in the profile was told to them by the author and other aspects they had to infer from events in the story.
This character profile will help them later when the have to create an interview podcast as the final task on the book
This year I also had them create a facebook-like page for their character as well.
I used a template that I saved from Dale Basler’s site. It was created in Publisher.
I then adapted it and created an example using Sherlock Holmes as my character.
On the “facebook page” the boys had to:
- Include basic profile data – age, education, family info, make up networks the character may belong to, education, etc. including an image of or avatar representing the character.
- Add “friends” – other characters from the book and put in how they “fit” into the story.
- Add posts from these friends.
- Put at least 2 stories in “What’s on my mind” about incidents in the book.
- Create or find 3 images representing events, people or places in the story.
This activity worked very well with the boys. They enjoyed doing the task, both those who had facebook accounts and those who did not. Without realising it, the boys did a lot of thinking and inferring and displayed their understanding of the books without realising how much work they had actually done.