Each of the 25 cards features an animal that exemplifies the character trait, plus three synonyms for each character trait. It’s a great activity to use with your students to help them better understand the characters they’re reading about and why they behave the way they do.

What You Need: Character traits bulletin board, paper, marker, class read-aloud book

What to Do: Display the character traits bulletin board set next to your classroom library or reading center. Direct students’ attention to the display, pointing out how each card shows a specific character trait and three other words with similar meanings.

Here are a few activities you can do with this bulletin board set:

• Have students sort the cards into positive and negative traits. As students decide into which category a trait belongs, ask them to explain their thinking. They’ll find that some traits may be easy to classify, while others are not as clear-cut. For example, you might ask: Is peculiar a positive or a negative trait? Why do you think so?

• After reading a book aloud to the class, ask students to identify each character’s traits. Explain that a character can have more than one trait, just like real-life people. For example, someone might be both kind and serious or funny and lazy. Ask students to think about their own traits. What words would they use to describe themselves?

• Post a sheet of paper next to each trait card and invite students to generate a list of characters with that trait, along with the titles of books they came from. Encourage students to add to the lists as they read more books throughout the year.

Standards Met: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.1.3, RL.2.3, RL.2.7, RL.3.3, RL.4.3, L.1.5, L.2.5, L.3.5