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Different Story Elements and their Definition

Grade 3
Jul 31, 2023

Introduction to Story Elements:

Stories consist of a series of events – real or imaginary.

When we read a story, we come across the following questions:

  • Who is the story about?
  • When and where does it take place?
  • What happens in the story?

Stories consist of the following basic elements.

Basic Element

1. Characters

The people, animals, or creatures in a story are called characters. The story is written about the characters. Characters can be real people or imaginary creatures.

2. Setting

Setting tells us when and where the story takes place. Setting denotes the place and time of the story.


3. Plot

Plot denotes the actions or events that take place in a story. It has a beginning, middle, and end. The plot consists of a problem and a solution. The problem is the difficulty faced by the character. The solution includes the steps taken by the character/s to resolve the problem.

4. Conflict

In a story, there will be a challenge or problem that the character faces. He/ she tries to figure out the problem.  Such problems are known as conflicts.

5. Solution

The character tries to fix the problem and when he/she finds a way to solve the problem, we call it a solution.

6. Theme

The theme is the message conveyed by the story or the lesson learned from it.

Let’s identify the story elements within the following story.


On a hot day, an ant was searching for some water. After walking around for some time she came to a spring. To reach the spring, she had to climb up a blade of grass. While making her way up, she slipped and fell into the water.

She could have drowned if a dove up a nearby tree had not seen her. Seeing the ant in trouble, the dove quickly plucked off a leaf and dropped it into the water near the struggling ant. The ant moved towards the leaf and climbed up there. Soon it carried her safely to dry ground. Just at that time, a hunter nearby was throwing out his net toward the dove, hoping to trap it.

Guessing what he was about to do, the ant quickly bit him on the heel. Feeling the pain, the hunter dropped his net. The dove was quick to fly away to safety. Thereafter, the dove and the ant became friends.

The story elements in this story are:

Characters: The ant, the dove, and the hunter

Setting: A hot day, near a spring

Plot: A dove sees an ant struggling in the spring and helps her. The ant also saves the dove from danger. They become great friends.

Problem: The ant fell into the spring (first problem).

                  The hunter tried to trap the dove (second problem).

Solution: The dove helped the ant by throwing a leaf at her.

                  The ant bit the hunter on his heel.

Theme: If you do good, good will come to you.

Story Elements


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