Teaching Shakespeare!

A Folger Education Blog

Filming the Text

~by Rick Vanderwall My fall semester Introduction to Literature students were a great group. This course is a required, entry level lit course for first year students.  Everybody takes this course and instructors are encouraged to develop unique, engaging themes for the course. I came up with “Journeys through Danger, Temptation, and Violence”. Although this… Continue Reading »


Shakespeare Uncovered

Last summer, the BBC aired a six-part series exploring Shakespeare’s plays with interviews from actors, directors, and scholars interspersed with clips from movies and recorded stage performances of the plays being discussed. On this side of the pond, at least, those of us without higher-listed cable waited patiently for either a DVD of the series… Continue Reading »


Centos: Mix and match!!

~by Carol Kelly A “centos” is a poem that has been created using lines from the works of other writers and is a form that has been around for almost two thousand years. The word cento comes from the Latin word for patchwork and allows creative opportunities for celebrating the beauty of language and poetry…. Continue Reading »


"Shall we go draw our numbers, and set on?"

~by Julia Perlowski (title quote from Henry IV, part 2) In my high school honors English class, my well-meaning teacher decided to have us read Macbeth.  I was thrilled.  I had been in classes where teachers played records of famous Shakespearean monologues read by famous people with thick British accents.   Who can forget “Oh, pardon… Continue Reading »


Titus Andronicus

In a recent article in The Guardian (1/1/13), Brian Cox talks about his first performance for the Royal Shakespeare Company, playing the lead character in Titus Andronicus which, if you’ve read some of my other blog entries, you’ll remember is my favorite Shakespeare play. Cox notes that the role of Titus was “… the most… Continue Reading »


Is Shakespeare Literature?

~ By Kevin J Costa Late this fall, at McDonogh School where I teach drama and run the Institute for Shakespeare and Renaissance Studies, my Institute students and I were talking about AP exams. And then one junior asked, “would it be acceptable to write about Shakespeare on an English AP exam?” You just smiled while… Continue Reading »