Fun with Shakespeare

Thursday, July 7, 2022
Many children struggle with Shakespeare mostly because of the language and some of them go in uncertain how the bard can possible impact their modern lives. In this matter I believe it is the job of every English teacher to attempt to make Shakespeare fun. Some of the best ways to introduce children to any Shakespeare play or sonnet is through music. Anyone who hasn't heard Sonnet Man needs to check out some of his videos:

Sonnet 130

When I taught middle school I would often use his performances to cover iambic pentameter. The kids loved it. Later on when reading a play, when then came along a soliloquy I would always have at least one student who would literally try to rap Shakespeare. The entire class would get into it and even I couldn't stop myself from laughing.

To Be or Not to Be

I found this video spoke a lot to many of my high school students. It took concepts from Hamlet, including his most famous speech, and relayed them to a beat and modern day settings. Showing how timeless some of the themes with the play Hamlet are including troubled families, lack of a father figure, and teenage suicide.

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