Choosing the point-of-view character is a decision each writer must face every time a new scene is started.

This is true unless you chose to tell your story from a first person perspective, where the events are narrated from the point of view of a certain character (and no one else) that will be used as a sort of narrative filter:  If he sees, listens to, smells or touches something, the reader will be able to do it as well. If he ignores something, the reader will as well.


In a third person narration, either omniscient or limited, the point-of-view character can be different from scene to scene. You will not want every scene to have a different leading character, however, as this would not provide the reader with a clear view of the events and he would end up being confused: each time you let a character see through other’s eyes, you alienate the reader from the former character’s ideas. The readers will not be able to feel the character’s emotions or experience the world with them and this dilutes and weakens the impact of the events that happen from his point of view.


So, if what you are looking for is to create some distance (to focus more on what happened instead of creating a deep connection with the characters), then consider this kind of point of view. But if, on the contrary, what you want to achieve is intimacy and deepening into the feelings, then limit the number of characters to just a few key ones by following these pieces of advice:

Decide who will lead your story and make sure that every element highlights or emphasizes him.         The point-of-view character is the one responsible for lending his eyes, his experience and his story to the reader so he can experience the events as if he were living them himself.

Events in a story are filtered through the character’s senses and are colored by his past, his understanding, his experiences and limitations. Everything there is to a character, what he has done or dreams about doing will influence his presentation and focus. This way, what is important to him will become important to the reader.

The point-of-view character is the, sometimes blind, guide through the scene. This is the reason why this character has the mission not only to reveal what happens in the story but also who plays a part in it.

Remember, it is not imperative for the point-of-view character to tell his own story; think of all the times when the focus is put on the feats of another character that does not have a voice of his own.

Your choice will influence the scenes and the development of the story

A scene told by a female character will be different from a scene told by a male character. A child will tell a different story from a grown up.

Age, gender, experiences, personality, religion, economic means and even the state of mind of a person will affect the story and the scene as far as it is displayed by the point-of-view character.

Consider that when you chose a character you must take into account who he is; this means that the scene will be seen and understood from his perspective, his story or his prejudices and that itself will make it richer or poorer. To make the most of it, our recommendation is to know beforehand the tone in which you want to narrate it and what you want to achieve with it. This will allow you to make a better choice.


-You can keep a constant point-of-view character through the story or alternate between more than one

-Many times the genre of your story can guide you. If you are writing romance you can alternate between the hero and the heroine.

-An unknown, omniscient narrator can go deep in the minds of several characters, providing the readers with an array of points of view.

-You can limit your point-of-view characters to two or three. By limiting the use of third-person you can introduce just a few specific characters to your readers.

-An omniscient narrator can get inside the mind of any character.

-You can have a single point-of-view character in every scene. Just remember that the reader discovers the world hand in hand with this character. He cannot ignore something your character knows.

-If you decide to focus the point of view in a single character, remember to zoom-out the image every now and then to show the big picture. This can be useful at the beginning of a new chapter or during the exposition.

– You can use a deep point-of-view in which, through third-person narration, you achieve the same as the first-person: you immerse yourself in the character and get to know his thoughts and feelings. If you do this, you have the choice to get periodically away from that character to give your readers a break.


Avoid jumping from head to head within the same scene or paragraph no matter the option you chose.

Mix points of view if you feel it is necessary and works for your story but let the reader know somehow that you plan on doing that. There is nothing more confusing that being inside the mind of a character and experience the world from his perspective just to be torn and put inside another one’s mind without previous warning. This motion breaks the sense of fiction and this sense is what allows the reader to keep on reading.


  • Select the text that’s right for their level
  • Ask the child to read aloud
  • Count the errors while he reads
  • Ask the literal, interpretative and evaluative questions about what he read (two or three questions of each)
  • Apply the level criteria and establish what level the child belongs to
  • Program activities to improve reading in the instructive and frustration levels, according to what was explained on the first part

How to study the end of a reading material


  • Individual practice: Now we only have the end of the story left. We have two drawings on the blackboard. In the first one, the mother is working and they’re just lying on the couch watching TV and drinking a coke. In the second one, the mother says she’s going to Ibiza by herself. What happens next? We’ll read the last part individually, and then we’ll draw an image to represent the scene. It’s important to imagine it, and don’t forget the conclusion the father and son reach”. Once they’re done, check the work.
  • Questions that improve inferences, connection to reality and realization of values. “What do you think of the technique? I think everyone understood the story perfectly, and now that you did the drawings, no one forgot it, right? If you were to take a history test, everyone would get a great grade.

Let’s see for ourselves with the following questions:

  • Do you think this is a real story and it happens to many families?
  • Have you ever witnessed anything like this?
  • Why is the mother vacationing alone?
  • How did she feel?
  • Did her husband and son understand her?
  • Why were they acting like that?
  • What did they do when they were left alone?
  • How did they solve the problem?
  • Do you think it’s fair that only one person does all the housework? “
  1. Conclusions: “What drawing represents the message the author wanted to transmit with the story? What’s that message? Yes, the conclusion and the message the author wants to give us is that ‘we all have to share the housework’. What were our initial hypotheses? Are they correct?” Now, name practical examples where the student can use the visualization technique.

Great practice: Independent practice

Form pairs, and one of them plays the journalist and the other the magnate. The journalist has to ask the magnate questions like, “Can everything in life be obtained quickly?”, “Can money buy anything?”, “Does everyone have to give you what you want without question just because you’re rich and powerful?”, and “Does your child act like you?”

6-Connections. We connect the text with the real word. Do you know children who behave like this? How are their families educating them? Do you think the parents who give their children anything they ask for are good parents or bad parents? Have you ever been bored no matter how many toys you had? When they ask you about your birthday, what do you want for a present? Do you always know the answer or do you have trouble coming up with one? When you get a toy, does it make you happier or do you get tired of it after a while?

7- Summarizing. In one phrase, we summarize the main subject of the reading.

Teaching: How to ask

We teach the Questioning strategy. “Today we’ll learn about a very important strategy that helps us understand what we read, and helps us study. Do you remember the last movie you watched? Do you remember the movie better than you remember the subject you studied? Why do we remember movies more easily? Among other things, we remember more easily because when we watch a movie, we ask ourselves questions subconsciously. We are not aware of it, but we think, “What is the movie about?”, “Is it a scary, romance, adventure, or crime movie?”, “Who stars in the movie?”, “What happens to the main character?”, and “Who are the good guys and who the bad guys are?” When we read, it’s really important to ask ourselves questions to clarify what’s happening. This way, we understand it better and we also remember it easier. In this text, who’s the main character? The child. Are there any other characters? The father. What does the child do? What does the father do? What’s the message of the text? How was the child? Savage and unfriendly. Why was he like that?”. The adult gives the answers to these questions.


  1. Everyone asks questions about the reading. You compare the questions with the questions you would have if the text was a movie. We focus on questions about the words in bold, “magnate”, “gifted”, and “frustration”. TO help them ask the questions, you tape cards in front of every student, asking what, why, who, etc. Come up with group questions that include these words.


  • OBJECTIVE: Learn the strategy


  • 1- Previewing. We motivate reading and teach the students how to do predictions.

“The reading is called What a Child! What could it be about? I think it will tell us the story of a brave and caring child who helps others and does something really valuable. Does anyone feel the same way? Could it mean something else? Who can think of anything else? It could also be the entire opposite. Maybe it’s a naughty child, and everyone is sick of him.”

“The text we’re reading reflects one of the most important problems we can find nowadays in schools, workplaces, stores, etc.: Tyranny, people abusing others, boring, thinking that money can solve anything”


  1. We work on the verbal fluency. The teacher serves as a model, reading the whole text. Then, the students read paragraphs of the text, trying to imitate the way the adult read.


Using theatrical reading is really useful. In it, several characters with emotional charges intervene. The teacher reads in front of the students and points out the emotions present in the characters. She assigns different characters to the students, and they practice the reading several times.

A variant of this is radio reading (reading in a radio show, or pretending to be reading in one), or using the students as models of it. Record their readings, and then listen to them, evaluating and practicing again.


Good readers have a good reading comprehension and fluency.

There are three aspects to comprehension: literal, interpretative and evaluative. To improve reading comprehension, it’s necessary to work on the three components, and even to work mainly on the last two. In Spain, teachers work mainly with literal reading or memorization. Besides, to understand the texts, students need to be taught a series of strategies. Reading fluency involves three aspects too: precision (capability to automatically recognize words within a text and phonemes within words), rhythm (the speed of reading), and expressivity. To improve comprehension and fluency, you have to use a methodology where the adult first serves as a model, and then practices with the students, guiding them. Then, the adult should guide individual practices. Next are some examples on practical lessons on how to improve reading, covering both fluency and comprehension.


Objective: teaching the summarizing strategy (summarizing what’s important).

  • Indicating the goal we have for the session. We point out the importance of being capable of summarizing in few words everything the author wants to say. We mention several advantages: studying better, understanding messages on the Internet, newspaper, movies…
  • Previewing: “It’s been said that many stories teach us important aspects of life so that we can be happier, fairer, and help each other… Do you know any story that teaches a lesson?” Comment on the stories briefly. “The story we’ll read today has a nice message, and we’ll try to figure out what the message is, because this message is the main idea. Discovering it helps us understand everything we read, and allows us to summarize it in few words. We’ll notice the title, “Story of the Light Worm without Light”. What does it mean? Are there worms with light? Are there worms without light? What’s the name of the worms that glow? What’s the story about? We’ll create a hypothesis… I think this story talks about a firefly who, for some reason, has no light anymore.”
  • The adult reads the story, serving as a model. He makes stops whenever there are new words, and explains them. Then, he divides the text in three and several students read it, trying to imitate the adult in his rhythm and expressions.