Started out watching Hamlet (the one w/Mel Gibson).  This is a list of questions to accompany the film. Hamlet Film Handout.  UPDATE: Students reported that it did help them to watch and hear the Shakespearean language before being required to jump in and read the play “cold”.  I’m pleased, because it segues so nicely into the Macbeth project listed below!

*Pass out a copy of McSweeney’s Hamlet, “Facebook Newsfeed Edition” and hopefully the kids will find it entertaining!   Then, while we are reading Macbeth, they will be required to create a similar copy for Macbeth (facebook newsfeed style)… This will serve in place of the dreaded Double Entry Journals or other reading journals.   Additionally, they must pretend to create a Facebook profile of a character of their choosing.  It is a lead up into writing a character analysis. *Students will not actually need access to Facebook at any time.

The handout: Shakespeare Unit Handout.


INTRO Macbeth using “Tea Party” style activity. Familiarize students with characters and plot. Hopefully pique curiosity.

SONNETS! We’re going super fast through this, right before we actually dive in to Macbeth.  I’m hopeful that it will help the kids adjust to the language.  I was thinking of showing a tiny (starts at 4:30 minutes into video) chunk from the middle of this youtube video where the teacher raps a sonnet. 

Here’s the link to a Shakespeare site, open to the Sonnets section.  I’m planning to have the students choose a sonnet, analyze it and present it on a poster.  Students will then write their own sonnet which will also be included on the poster.  When they present all of this to the class, they may read the Shakespearean sonnet creatively, if they choose.  (In the above video, it is presented in the form of a rap). They will not be required to present their own writing orally, though it will be on the poster.

Next up: alternating listening to CD reading and choral reading for the ENTIRE Macbeth play… we’ll see how it goes. Here’s a link to a site where they are reading the play.  It’s mediocre, but I haven’t made it to the library yet.  As for the challenging language, I’m going to use “No fear Shakespeare” for now, from Sparknotes of all places! 🙂  They provide a line for line modern translation adjacent to the original language.

Found a neat website! “Shakespeare: A Virtual Field Trip” to avoid a lengthy lecture…

Below you will find (roughly) what we did during the 2008-09 school year:

HANDOUT with assignment from week of Feb 2-6th.  Explanation of due dates.    Modernizing Act V. After this, you will be finished with Shakespeare for the year.

Due Friday, Jan 23:

Macbeth Act III Scenes 4-6

Your task is to create a comic strip with actual quotes from the text OR a 2-3 song soundtrack for this part of the play.  We are working individually.  CHOOSE ONE!

  • Comic:  Show that you understand what the most important events are and that you have put thought into choosing how to depict the action of the scenes for your comic strip.  Use ACTUAL quotes from text.  Extra credit for high quality project.
  • Soundtrack: Show that you understand that mood, events, and characterizations transpiring in this portion of the play when selecting songs for the mini soundtrack.  Provide lyrics AND a paragraph explaining why you feel it relates; SUPPORT FROM TEXT.  Extra credit for bringing in a burned CD.

The instructions for the ongoing assignments described BELOW are on this Shakespeare Unit Handout.

On the handout shown above, you will find a thorough description of the reading journal assignment REPLACEMENT task: “Macbeth – Facebook Newsfeed Edition” which also includes writing what students believe the Facebook profile of a significant character might look like today. *Students will not actually need access to Facebook at any time.

On the same handout as the above assignment, you will find details regarding the sonnet project.  For the next (about) 2 weeks, students will be presenting their sonnet projects.  This includes selecting a Shakespearean sonnet, analyzing it, and then creating his or her own sonnet following the same theme as the Shakespearean sonnet.  They will present it in poster form to the class.

*Literature Resource Center – a database with expert critiques and analysis.

Here are the Hamlet Film Questions you must answer by Monday, Jan. 12 2009.  Here is the Hamlet ”Facebook Newsfeed Edition” of your on-going assignment for Macbeth.


One Response to “Shakespeare”

  1. […] submitted a lesson unit on Macbeth. You can read her blog Mrs. Follis’s Teacher Page for […]

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