Identify the Elements of a Story Plot

Contributor: Danielle Childers. Lesson ID: 10202

Have you ever sat through a movie and tried to figure out what it's all about? Does it seem like the characters are just running around doing what they want for no reason? Learn about story plots!



learning style
personality style
Lion, Beaver
Grade Level
Intermediate (3-5)
Lesson Type
Quick Query

Lesson Plan - Get It!


You are engrossed in a movie, following the action, when you are interrupted!

  • When is the worst time for you to get interrupted in a movie: the beginning, the part when all the action is happening, or the resolution at the end?

All story elements are important to a movie, but for most people, getting interrupted in the middle of all the action is the worst!

The part of the movie when all the action is coming to a peak is called the climax of the story.

When creating a story for a movie or a book, an author follows a specific outline, or story path, called a plot. The plot usually consists of 5 elements.

  • Can you guess what they are? (Hint: Look at the diagram below!)

For a good review, listen to this Elements of the Plot Peet Students video by Donna Vannatter below. While you are listening, write down the plot elements you hear and their definitions:

Now, review what elements were presented in the song:

  • Which story element describes the characters, the setting, and creates a hook for the reader?

Yes, the exposition.

  • Once the reader is introduced to the book, what plot element comes next?

Correct, the rising action.

  • We see the conflict during the rising action, and what is at the very peak of the story?

The climax, correct!

  • What 2 plot elements come after the climax?

The falling action and the resolution to end the story.

The elements of a plot can be seen as a mountain, like in the diagram below:

plot diagram

Here is a great Story Structure: Parts of the Narrative | Common Core Reading Skills Lesson video by MortonTeaches to review the story elements one more time:

Now that you have been introduced to the five plot elements, move on to the Got It? section to create a plot foldable.

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