Studying characterization in the first act of Macbeth is essential for students’ understanding of the dynamic transformation of characters throughout the play, Shakespeare’s universal illustration of the influence of ambition and the destruction of guilt.
This creative writing activity requires students to adopt the persona of a character and think the way he or she does.
To begin, there is a scenario describing the night of Duncan’s arrival at Inverness. Students are to imagine that Duncan is preparing a speech to honor his warriors, Macbeth is writing in a journal, Banquo comments in a log, and Lady Macbeth is entering thoughts in her diary.
There is a definition of persona and its etymological origins.
Following are directions for the activity which require students to assume the persona of Macbeth, Banquo or Lady Macbeth and complete the entry described.
For each character, students are provided with three important points to cover. For example, for Macbeth include thoughts about the witches’ prophecies, Duncan’s kingly graces, and his love for his wife.
Students are required to include a from Act 1. I’ve included directions about quoting: slashes for line ends, brackets for omissions or clarification, block quotes, and citation format (MLA).
Students are also required to provide a graphic, art, photo, bitmoji…anything that portrays their characters’ state of mind.
The composition requirements include length (250-300 words) and reminder to follow class format requirements.
As a model, I’ve included a speech by Duncan, which illustrates the various requirements of the activity. (I really enjoyed writing that!)
I include the graphic which is Sleep and his Half-brother Death by John William Waterhouse.
Finally, there is a scoring rubric, which I encourage kids to use as a checklist when writing and peer editing.
The activity is PowerPoint, is editable, and prints out on standard 8.5X11” paper.
The format is attractive; clear font; relevant graphics.
Please visit my store for other Macbeth activities including comprehension and analysis questions for each act, a bundle of all of those, and some other creative activities. Click below:
Thank you for your consideration of this resource!