Teaching Shakespeare!

A Folger Education Blog

Posts By: Folger Education

Quartos and Folios in the English Classroom

By Sara Lehn “Stand, who is that?” “Tis I.” “Who’s there?” “Nay, answer me.  Stand and unfold yourself.” What’s the difference between the two exchanges above?  Either not much or quite a lot, depending on your perspective.  Both indicate two people looking to identify each other.  Therefore, both imply a certain level of curiosity or… Continue Reading »


What Sustains You As A Teacher?

Why is being a teacher worth it? What is it that draws you to the classroom? English teacher Rachel Ravreby Lintgen, a 1994 graduate of Amherst College in Massachusetts, gives her own answers to these important questions in a recent blog post. The Folger has a special connection to Amherst since the college is Henry Folger’s… Continue Reading »


Silent Shakespeare

[getty src=”fst043011?et=naytA2hrSzRP6E94bv_XTw&sig=r-VTCoLilX8f7P9Dp26hJCN03VHv9nMrC1MN-ekO2cc=” width=”511″ height=”334″] By Deborah Gascon Have you ever seen any silent films of Shakespeare’s plays? During the 2014 Teaching Shakespeare Institute, I sat for hours in the belly of the Folger Shakespeare Library watching black-and-white silent films of Othello and Romeo and Juliet—and it was the best day ever. I was fascinated—how does a… Continue Reading »


Circle Performances with Shakespeare

By Deborah Gascon It’s September and the weather is cooling down, but your students’ love for Shakespeare is warming up, right? Okay, maybe not love like, “will you go to the homecoming dance with me?” love, but maybe a lukewarm shyness sort of love? Your students aren’t ready to dance with Shakespeare, but definitely have… Continue Reading »


Field Trip for the Future: A First Folio

Just how important is the First Folio? Well, the First Folio is the only source for eighteen of Shakespeare’s plays, including Macbeth, Julius Caesar, Twelfth Night, The Tempest, and As You Like It, all of which would otherwise have been lost. Imagine taking your students to see one of these books! The Folger holds 82 copies of… 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 »


Shakespeare and Faulkner: Patriarchy in 'King Lear' and 'As I Lay Dying'

Performances of Shakespeare’s Globe: King Lear began last Friday at Folger Theatre, so we thought this would be an opportune time to share a unit plan based on Shakespeare’s famous play about a father and his three daughters. The unit plan, featured on our Shakespeare in American Life website, comes from English teacher Keith Muller. Over the course… Continue Reading »


Pop Sonnets: Shakespeare and Contemporary Music

Have you seen the Pop Sonnets tumblr? It’s a simple yet ingenious formula: taking lyrics from popular songs and rewriting them in the form of a Shakespearean sonnet. The creativity on display here is delightful. Beyonce’s “Single Ladies” receives this final couplet: “If truly you did wish to win my hand, you should have graced it with… Continue Reading »


Speaking Shakespeare: From fear to "the feeling that I could do it"

Why do we make such a big deal about performance-based learning? We at the Folger strongly believe that Shakespeare is for everyone and that speaking the Bard’s words for yourself is essential to gaining an understanding of and appreciation for Shakespeare’s plays. Lenny Henry, the British comedian turned acclaimed actor, recently shared his turn-around experience with… Continue Reading »


Translating Shakespeare

What happens when Shakespeare’s work is translated into foreign languages? Is it still Shakespeare? Or does something fundamental to the original evaporate in the process? “Bless Thee! Thou Art Translated,” a podcast in the Folger Shakespeare Library’s Shakespeare Unlimited series, raises these thought-provoking questions. A translator can retain the story, characters, and ideas of a play, but the intricate wordplay… Continue Reading »