The King's Equal Lesson Plan

Instructor: Suzanne Rose

Suzanne has taught all levels PK-graduate school and has a PhD in Instructional Systems Design. She currently teachers literacy courses to preservice and inservice teachers.

'The King's Equal,' a tale by Katherine Paterson, is the focus of this lesson plan. Activities will involve the students in summarizing the story, analyzing characters and providing evidence from the text to support their conclusions.

Learning Objectives

As a result of this lesson, students will be able to:

  • summarize the story, The King's Equal, by Katherine Paterson
  • identify plot points in the story
  • name and describe characters, providing evidence from the text
  • analyze the story to determine whether it is a fairy tale, providing evidence from the text


45-60 minutes

Curriculum Standards


Ask and answer questions to demonstrate understanding of a text, referring explicitly to the text as the basis for the answers.


Recount stories, including fables, folktales, and myths from diverse cultures; determine the central message, lesson, or moral and explain how it is conveyed through key details in the text.


Describe characters in a story (e.g., their traits, motivations, or feelings) and explain how their actions contribute to the sequence of events.

Materials Needed

The King's Equal by Katherine Paterson (1 book per student)


  • This lesson focuses on an overview of the book, so students should have already completed reading the book before this lesson is introduced.
  • Hold up a copy of The King's Equal by Katherine Paterson, so that the students can see the cover. Ask: Who is the 'King' named in the title of the book? How do you know?
  • Review the plot of the story with the students by asking them:
    • Who are the main characters?
    • What is Raphael's problem in the story?
    • Do you think it was smart of his father to require Raphael to find a queen who is his equal before he can wear the crown? Why or why not? What does Raphael think about it?
    • How does Raphael first try to find a girl to marry him who is his equal?
    • Does this work? Why or why not?
    • Is Raphael a good king to his people?
    • Why does Rosamund's father send her to live in the mountains?
    • Who does Rosamund meet in the mountains? What does he tell her to do?
    • When Raphael meets Rosamund, does he think she is his equal?
    • Does Rosamund think Raphael is her equal? Why or why not?
    • What does Rosamund tell Raphael that he must do before she will marry him?
    • Is Raphael successful?
    • Who was the better ruler of the kingdom--Raphael or Rosamund?
    • How does the story end?
    • What do you think the lesson or theme of this story is?

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