Teaching Shakespeare!

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Posts Tagged: King Lear

Teaching King Lear in Times of Grief

It was the start of term 2 in 2016 and I was preparing the Grade 12 students for our study of King Lear. We read an excerpt from The Little Prince. It was meant to introduce big questions around blindness, appearance, and reality. We used the line, ‘It is only with the heart that one… Continue Reading »


Shakespeare: Text to Text

Teaching one Shakespeare play in a school year can be challenging enough, what with mandated curriculums, standardized testing, holidays, and school activities which take a cavalcade of kids out of class on a regular basis.  I choose to do two plays in a year with my senior classes, a tragedy and a comedy.  I want… Continue Reading »


5 Soliloquies to Teach in This Month of Resolutions

Happy New Year, colleagues! This time of year, there’s a tendency to look inward. We reflect. We resolve. And, if you’re anything like me, you wrestle with your resolutions, too. What better time to take a close look at the most introspective moments in Shakespeare: characters’ conversations with themselves? Today we’re highlighting 5 soliloquies—some of… Continue Reading »


James Shapiro and The Year of Lear

By Folger Education   Last week, the Folger hosted a book launch for our colleague James Shapiro’s The Year of Lear: Shakespeare in 1606. Shapiro, Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University and member of the Folger Board of Governors, discussed how the tumultuous events in England in 1606 affected Shakespeare and shaped the… Continue Reading »


A Conversation with Dr. Russ McDonald

By Michael LoMonico   I recently interviewed Russ McDonald, professor of English at Goldsmiths College, University of London. Russ was a resident scholar at the Folger’s Teaching Shakespeare Institute from 1985-1986, and served as the head scholar from 1988-1994. He is the author of The Bedford Companion to Shakespeare: An Introduction with Documents and the… Continue Reading »


Shakespeare Uncovered Returns on PBS

  The second season of Shakespeare Uncovered begins on January 30th.  The Folger has been asked to work with WNET THIRTEEN to create support material for teachers and their students. I’ve been lucky to have seen the series already and want to share some of the highlights with you. Hugh Bonneville and Ralph Fiennes on Performing… Continue Reading »


YOUR Teaching Epiphanies, Part 2

The epiphanies continue! Today is the anniversary of the death of Irish writer James Joyce, whose famous epiphanies, a century later, still inspire conversation and inquiry. (Plus, did you know that Hamlet was a major source for Joyce, who gave a series of lectures on Shakespeare?) We think it’s fitting, then, today, to offer a second installment of your teaching… Continue Reading »


Why I Love the High School Fellowship Program

We often feature the voices of teachers on this blog. But today, we hear from a student… By Mikaela Ruiz-Ramon The Folger Shakespeare Library High School Fellowship Program is a 3 month-long course offered to Washington D.C. Metropolitan Area high school students. I am part of a group of 16 Fellows that meets every week… Continue Reading »


Exploring "King Lear" as a Reader, Teacher, and Audience Member

By Dan Bruno King Lear, in its embodiment of the horrors of human existence, is the black hole at the center of the Shakespearean tragic universe, drawing in any sense of light and hope and keeping it from escaping. The big questions at the center of this play challenge us as human beings to confront a… Continue Reading »


King Lear: A Government Official's Perspective

In our most recent blog post, we featured a unit plan from our Shakespeare in American Life website about patriarchy in King Lear (onstage right now at Folger Theatre) and William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying. Today, we return to Shakespeare in American Life for a look at some fascinating comments about King Lear by Janet… Continue Reading »


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