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Highest Rated Teaching Modules

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Highest Rated Teaching Modules


"Touching this vision": Imagery in Hamlet

Many students have trouble identifying central images, symbols, and themes in Shakespeare's plays without a teacher directly pointing them out. This assignment allows students to work independently and identify literary elements and techniques in …


Exploring Archetypes in Shakespeare

1 Henry IV is one of Shakespeare's histories that explores the political struggle for power in England during the 1400s.The characters in Shakespeare's histories, like most fiction, can be based on actual events and the people who shaped …


Lesson 01: Pre-reading for Julius Caesar

Students will examine some of the issues of friendship and leadership that they will encounter in reading Julius Caesar. …


Shakespeare Storyboard: Pre-Reading the Play

In this lesson students will explore and understand the plot outline of one of Shakespeare’s plays using tableaux and making a storyboard. By exploring actions of the characters in dynamic points of the …


Relay Shakespeare: Sharing Hamlet’s Soliloquies

In this lesson, students will work in groups of four or five on a single soliloquy by Hamlet in order to

  1. experience how thoughts are discovered and how they build over the course of a soliloquy and;
  2. experience the …


"What are these...?"

Shakespeare's witches, or, more accurately, Shakespeare's weird sisters are the source of much speculation and dramatic spectacle. Yet, for all the attention they get, there is still room for debate over exactly what they are and what type and …


Mapping Shakespeare
Each student will focus closely on one character in the play and create a visual representation of that character's language, personality, motivation, and relationships. He or she will then use that visual piece as a jumping-off point for …


"Here's much to do with hate, but more with love": The Prologue in Romeo and Juliet

Part of the fun of teaching Romeo and Juliet is letting students see how the play is about much more than romantic love. In this lesson, students will work in pairs on a guided close reading of the prologue. Once students understand how …


Who is Gertrude, Really?
Students will form their own opinions about Gertrude by imaginatively creating entries for Gertrude's journal. Each journal entry will reveal much about Gertrude's character at pivotal moments in the play.


"Speak What We Feel, Not What We Ought to Say"

A playwright—by frequently limiting character description to dialogue—leaves a large portion of the process of interpreting the character to the actor and director. This vagueness can cause stress in students who prefer to "know the …


What's Your Sign?

In this lesson, students will analyze characters' personalities and relate them to the study of astrology in Shakespeare's time. This activity will increase the students’ understanding of early modern beliefs about astrology and, in …


Tempest in the Lunchroom
Today students will be introduced to The Tempest. They will act out the opening shipwreck scene, or watch and direct others doing it. By doing this activity, students will use the text to understand the plot, see that what seemed daunting …


"This Was the Noblest Roman of Them All"

In this lesson, students will not only have a chance to create promptbooks for the final scene of the play, but also the opportunity to view the work of professional actors and directors and respond to that work. Students will focus on the …


Lesson 06: The Adder and the Ladder: Figurative Language as Persuasion in Julius Caesar

Students will read, speak, and analyze Brutus's soliloquy of 2.1.10-36, where he uses figurative language to associate ambition …


"A rich jewel in an Ethiop's ear:" original line or familiar find?

Today students will examine a primary source document from 1684 that includes many of the same lines found in Romeo's speech to Juliet in


Enter Ophelia: Stage Directions, Promptbooks, and Film

The lesson offers students a chance to learn more about Ophelia’s mad scenes in Act Four of Hamlet by encouraging them to look at the scene as a script that has both fascinated and inspired actors and directors since the play was …


"For I Can Speak Against the Thing I Say"-An Antithesis Scavenger Hunt

Antithesis is a feature of Shakespeare's writing where a word, image, thought, or phrase is balanced by an opposite word, image, thought, or phrase. Students will examine Shakespeare's use of antithesis in his verse and prose in order to discover …


"Sir, the people must have their voices": Giving Voice to the Voiceless

Students will:

  • Choose a character that has some direct effect on the action
  • Write  a monologue for an off stage character in the style of Shakespeare

This lesson will take 2 x 40 minute class …


Parenting 101

Students will examine Romeo and Juliet in the context of three excerpts from The Office of Christian Parents: Shewing How Children Are To Be Gouerned throughout All Ages and Times of Their Life. These excerpts deal with instructions …


A Casket, A Casket

In today’s lesson, students will explore the theme of “All that glisters is not gold.” 2.7.65.  Students will understand the reasoning that motivates Portia’s three suitors (The …

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