Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events.


  • describe/description
  • characters
  • character traits

  • character motivations
  • character feelings
  • actions

  • sequence
  • events
  • plot

what's this
  • Verbally describing characters and related actions supports oral language development,
  • vocabulary acquisition, and speaking and listening standards across grade levels.
  • Organizing information, describing relationships (i.e., how traits influence behaviors and
  • actions), and summarizing are active reading comprehension strategies that can be
  • applied to a variety of texts and experiences across content areas. For example, those same strategies can be utilized during scientific observations and discussions of historical figures.
  • Being able to visualize and summarize character traits and actions are prerequisites to and
  • will support higher levels of comprehension, such as synthesizing information, making inferences, and forming opinions.
  • Examining how the author directly describes characters and indirectly reveals traits through
  • the characters’ actions will help students understand author’s purpose and to distinguish between relevant vs. unimportant information in a variety of texts.
  • Comparing and contrasting character traits revealed by the author’s words versus character
  • traits apparent in illustrations or visual representations would help students integrate and analyze literature and arts.
  • Participating in character description and analysis improves student understanding of
  • narratives and their structure, which helps students learn how to write their own stories.

  • How does understanding story elements, such as characters, actions, and sequential events,
  • support comprehension of narrative texts?
  • What additional instructional support can be provided for students who struggle to attend to the
  • important elements of text?
  • What strategies can be used to help students describe the characters and related
  • actions and events?
  • How does character description and analysis contribute to the overall comprehension of
  • narrative stories?


Go to RL.2.3 to see skills mastered prior to this.