Teaching Shakespeare!

A Folger Education Blog

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A Festival of Learning: Student Reflections

By Folger Education   Hey, everyone! Since you can’t be here for the Secondary School Shakespeare Festival, we thought we’d share some glimpses into all this magic. Here’s what our fabulous Festival-goers have to say about their time with Shakespeare’s language and one another.   “When I found out we were performing Shakespeare, I was… Continue Reading »


Giving Me Life: The 2015 Secondary School Shakespeare Festival

Greetings from our 34th Secondary School Shakespeare Festival! It’s day two, and we’re just loving everyone’s joy, courage, and passion for language. Festival-goers are making friends and memories all over the place. And we at Folger Education are convinced that we’re the luckiest people on earth: we get to watch inspiring young people perform and… Continue Reading »


4 Fresh Ideas for Teaching Familiar Speeches

By Dan Bruno Often, when talking with colleagues, I find that a difficult part of teaching well-known plays like Hamlet is making the recognizable, highly quotable speeches seem fresh and alive with possibility. Here are some activities to help students discover the originality and complexity of familiar speeches from Shakespeare: Make It Personal: Have you… Continue Reading »


Inside the Classroom: Students Share How They Really Feel about Starting a Shakespeare Unit

In this special series we’re calling “Inside the Classroom,” we’ll follow middle school teacher Gina Voskov and her students as they embark on a Twelfth Night unit. Today, it’s all about pre-reading—check back for notes from the group throughout the learning process. By: Gina Voskov I am so pleased to introduce Won Jae, Lois, and Alexandra,… Continue Reading »


More Great Ways to Start a Shakespeare Unit

By Folger Education Thanks, teaching colleagues, for sharing your responses to our last post! From technology to performance, here are some of YOUR suggestions for getting started with Shakespeare. Enjoy! Last year the following worked beautifully to engage students with the Prologue to R&J. Start off with pairs saying the same sentence but alternating which… Continue Reading »


5 Great Ways to Start a Shakespeare Unit

by Corinne Viglietta   New semester, new plays! A lot of teachers are kicking off, or getting ready to kick off, a Shakespeare unit, so we thought we’d talk about what to do on those first days. From having students put some verse on its feet to creating a tempest in the lunchroom, these activities… 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 »


What’s Shakespeare Got to Do with the Maker Movement?

By Corinne Viglietta   Shakespeare was a maker (39 plays, 154 sonnets, lots of new words, and more), and he wrote about making things, too. In Shakespeare we meet makers of all kinds: noisemakers, grave-makers, jig-makers, hornmakers, peacemakers, ballad-makers, ropemakers, gallows-makers, shoemakers, cuckold-makers, card-makers, widow-makers, sailmakers, and makers of manners. Fast-forward four centuries. There’s buzz… Continue Reading »


Creative Midterms: Assessing Process and Performance

By Jill Burdick-Zupancic   Midterms. This word always evokes a bit of panic in my mind. It feels like some kind of “super assessment” I’m expected to give to my students. Even in my seventh year as an educator, it’s a jarring word; however, the past three years, since my experience at the Teaching Shakespeare Institute… Continue Reading »