Grade: Middle
Subject: Literature

#2410. Great Expectations Character Adoption

Literature, level: Middle
Posted Tue Oct 23 19:42:54 PDT 2001 by Melinda Ackerman (
Allen Academy
Allen Academy, Bryan, Texas
Materials Required: Handouts 1-4, items for tea party
Activity Time: 2 to 3 days
Concepts Taught: Understand characterization and application

(Handout 1)
Adopt a Character

Adopt a character from the list and become an authority on the character: how does your character behave, what would your character say, how would your character interact with others? Know what your character looks like and who your character's friends are.

Pip (the boy)
Mr. Jaggers
Bentley Drummle
Mrs. Joe Gargery (Georgiana)
Joe Gargery
First Convict
The Aged P.
2nd convict
Miss Skiffins
Mr. Wopsle
Mr. Wopsle's Great Aunt
Mr. Trabb
Clara Barley
Mr. Pumblechook
Miss Havisham
Trabb's Boy
Sarah Pocket
Pip (the gentleman)
Mrs. Brandley
Mr. Matthew Pocket
Herbert Pocket
John Whemmick

(Handout 2)
Describe A Persona

Each of you has selected a character to follow throughout the novel. Let us begin our study of this character by identifying some unique characteristics, which is evident from our reading.

On a separate piece of paper answer the following questions:

Name of character

Character's Physical Characteristics
Approximate height and weight
Voice quality (volume, dialect, pitch) with example from text

Character's Personality and Behavior
Assertive or mild-mannered? Example
Pleasant or grouchy? Example
Modest or a braggart? Example
Broad-minded or prejudiced? Example

Character's Personal History
Social level
Important incidents in life (turning points)

Animal Likeness
What animal(s) does this character call to mind? Examples

Character's Social Life
Finish the exercise by "coming to tea" as your adopted character.

(Hand out 3)
Victorian Tea Sign-up

Please bring your items on Tuesday morning. We will have tea during your class period. Remember to bring along your character. This is to be a fun party to relax before we start Stage 3.

Please bring tea bags not loose leaf tea. Loose-leaf tea is traditional, but due to time constraints we will use bagged tea. You only need to bring 5 or so tea bags of each tea you sign up for.

Assam Tea or a Fruit Tea
Darjeerling Tea
Ceylon Tea
Jasmine Tea
Earl Grey Tea

Other choices: English Breakfast, Formosa Oolong, Gunpowder, Lady Londonberry, Lapsang Souchong, Orange Peloe

Tea Sandwiches
Tea Sandwiches

Tea Cakes
Tea Cakes

Playing Cards

If you would kike to make any of these items check the Internet or the library for the following books for recipes:
Foley, Tricia. Having Tea.
Frey, Iris Ihde. Crumpets and Scones.
Isles, Joanna. A proper Tea
Israel, Andrea. Taking Tea
Simpson, Helen. The London Ritz Book of
Afternoon Tea.


(Handout 4)
Rules for "Beggar My Neighbor"

This is a very old game, and a very simple one. It may be played by any number up to six.

The cards are dealt as far as they will go, because it does not matter if one or two players hold a card more than some others.

The players do not look at the cards dealt to them, but arrange them in a pile, face downwards, on the table in front of them.

The player on the left of the dealer then turns the top card of his or her pile face upwards, and places it in the center of the table; the person on that player's left places the top card of his or her pile face upwards on the top of the card in the center; and so on, round the table, until an Ace, King, Queen or Jack is turned up. When this happens, the next player has to pay by placing on the pile 4 cards for an Ace, 3 for a King, 2 for a Queen and 1 for a Jack.

If, during the pay-off, an Ace, King, Queen or Jack is turned up, the player stops paying and is paid by the player on his or her left for the card turned up.

When a pay-off is completed, the winner takes all the cards from the center of the table and places them at the bottom of his or her pile.

The game is won by the player who collects all fifty-two cards of the pack.

This project works well between Stage II and Stage III.
I assessed this project in three ways. . .how well class time was used; quality of turned in character sketch; and participation by dressing and/or acting the part of their character at the tea party. We have our tea party during class time. I borrowed tea pots from other teachers, and rented glass plates and cups and saucers. My students thought it was terrific. They even played "Beggar My Neighbor" all period.

Adapted from Julie Minnis, Santa Cruz H.S., UCSC