12 Character Traits Anchor Diagrams for Elementary and Center Colleges

Learning to recognize and understand character traits inside and out can help readers improve their general understanding. When children are young, character traits are often clearly formulated in the text. However, as they move on to more advanced reading, they need to learn to draw conclusions from dialogues and actions. Publish these character traits anchor diagrams so your students know what to look for as they read.

1. Inside and outside

This inside / outside poster is one of the most popular character traits anchor diagrams. If you’re not in the mood for the artwork, get a free artwork here instead.

Source: Heidi Roberts / Pinterest

2. Actions and dialogue

Remind students that they need to look deeply into the text to learn more about the characters, including analyzing what they are saying and doing.

Learn more: Actions and Dialog / ELA Anchor Diagrams

3. Emotions vs. Characteristics

It is important that children be able to separate emotions – which are transitory – from qualities that are ongoing. This table has two great questions for students to ask themselves while reading.

Learn more: Teachers trap

4. Says, does, thinks, feels

If students keep four things in mind as they read – what the characters think, do, say, and feel – they will find it easier to identify each trait. This is a nice anchor diagram for elementary school students.

Learn more: Just teach

5. Feelings, dialogue, actions, thoughts

Middle and high school students can also benefit from anchor charts for character traits. We like the clean look and the detailed examples.

Learn more: High School Snapshots


The acronym FAST is another way to remember how to analyze a character’s traits. Help your students create their own anchor diagrams of character traits using this format for a book you’re reading as a class.

Learn more: Smile and Sunshine Sun

7. Character traits and antonyms

If kids are having trouble finding the words they’re looking for to identify more subtle features, try this table of antonyms. It’s a great way to note that most characters are also a mix of positive and negative traits.

Learn more: Making Connections

8. Characters can change

As if character traits weren’t complicated enough, many characters change and grow over time. Encourage students to keep an eye out for these developments as they read.

Learn More: Characters May Change / ELA Anchor Charts

9. Characters have feelings too

Although feelings and emotions are different from the traits themselves, they can help us learn more about character details. For example, if a character often feels happy sharing with others, one of their qualities might be “generous.”

Learn more: Miss DeCarbo

10. I know because

It is important that children are able to give examples that demonstrate the traits they have identified. When they say a character is a strong leader, they should be able to point to places in the text where the characters’ actions back it up. In this table, children are required to provide both characteristics and examples by filling in the “I know because…” gap.

Find out more: All about combat fire

11. Grow ideas about a character

For children who have difficulty digging deeper into more complicated texts to identify features, try this table. It provides useful questions and suggestions to help students think their way through the reading.

Learn more: Making Connections / Pinterest

12. Readers’ workshop

We love the idea of ​​having kids create their own character traits anchor diagrams during a reader workshop. Find out how a teacher does it at the link.

Learn More: Mrs. Patton’s Class

Looking for more ideas? Check out the best writing anchor charts here.

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