Teaching Shakespeare!

A Folger Education Blog

The First Folio Teaches Teachers – In YOUR words!

Image: Catherine Young, Cleveland Public Library
Image: Catherine Young, Cleveland Public Library

It has been quite a year! In 2016, over 1400 teachers attended workshops as part of the Folger Shakespeare Library’s First Folio! The Book that Gave Us Shakespeare traveling exhibition and dove into the history of how Shakespeare’s texts came to us.  Here is what a few of you had to say about your experience:


“I hadn’t realized truly how many versions and copies were/are available, and how we can trace the evolution of the text.” – Wyoming


“Having visited and studied the First Folio Exhibition, I now realize that without the First Folio, many of Shakespeare’s most important plays would have been lost, such as Julius Caesar, Antony and Cleopatra, Coriolanus, and Macbeth.” – New York


“As a history teacher, I will try to incorporate scenes from plays such as Julius Caesar as a complementary activity. In teaching Elizabethan England, and the early days of the printing press, I will use what I learned about the Folio – particularly about the quartos!” – New York


“Shakespeare was opened up in a way that I can present it to students more successfully.”

– Wyoming


“I had an opportunity to have my students come in contact with the Folio. Aside from students learning in school of Shakespeare, it is valuable for them to see that what they are learning is connected to the world beyond the classroom. They were in awe of the value of Shakespeare’s First Folio and the methods used to preserve this world treasure. As an English teacher, I try to import to my students how his work is still touching the base issues and problems and feelings that we experience today. Seeing the Folio and watching and hearing the presentation, really helped drive that home for them.” – Florida


If you are interested in learning more about the First Folio and how its history could open new doors in your classroom, here are some useful resources: