Creating Characters using Writing Workshop by Christine DePetrillo is a complete program of instruction for teachers of grades 3 through 8 to help students learn how to create believable characters in their stories.
The lessons in the book are designed to mesh with a Writing Workshop teaching model, although they can be used outside of that framework as well. Each teaching activity in the book is aligned with one or more specific Common Core Standards for Writing, Reading, and Language.
Each of the four chapters addresses different aspects of character development, with five teaching lessons in each chapter. The book is designed to take students from their first concepts of potential characters to creating fully formed, fleshed-out characters. “Characters that breathe,” according to DePetrillo.
The book includes everything teachers will need when teaching character creation: printable graphic organizers that teachers can use with their students as they work through the lessons, along with checklists to assess the quality of the students’ work. DePetrillo suggests books for each grade level that include examples of strong characters, and she offers professional resources for teachers who want to find books and websites with more information.
Christine DePetrillo is both an experienced teacher and a fiction writer, published under her pen name, Christy Major. The lessons in Creating Character using Writing Workshop have been tested in the classroom over many years and across a variety of grades.
• Observing Characters
• Getting to Know Characters
• Character Evolution
• Character Voice
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