Romeo and Juliet
This week the blog is focusing on high school English resources. This is the third of three posts. There is a contest running this week associated with the content focus.
How can you talk about high school English without talking about Shakespeare? There is so much out there to "help" teachers with the complicated text and it can be overwhelming. Instead of trying to choose one, I have compiled a list of the sites that I think have the best resources for teaching Romeo and Juliet to Freshmen students.
Folger Shakespeare Library: A curriculum guide is available that is really wonderful and very thorough. Among many other things the guide contains two lesson plans but, even if all you do it use the character guide on page 5, I recommend it. This curriculum guide goes with the Folger edition of the play (also worth a look). While I realize many schools do not use this edition of the play clearly, the guide could be used with many different editions of the play.
No Fear Shakespeare: Shakespeare is daunting enough for students but for those that have reading difficulties or are English language learners it can be frustrating to the point of giving up. No Fear Shakespeare will help. The play is laid out on one side of the page while on the other is the "translation" of the play into modern English. A great cheat sheet for struggling learners or to help all students. You can make the decsion to print specific sections out for students or just give them the link.
Interactive Folio: The Canadian Adaptations of Shakespeare Project have put together an interactive version of Romeo and Juliet. The text of the play is on the left side of the screen. Pieces of the text are underlined in red. When you click on the underlined words and phrases an annotated definition pops up, a video or audio clip depicting the line pops up or an explanation of what the name or phrase is referring to pops up. Think of it as interactive footnotes. It's a great tool. For students, used to a true multimedia experience, this is a very interesting way to present the play. It must be read but, there are interactive pieces that enhance the experience and help the student build a deeper understanding of the play.
Almost every English I teacher has to teach Romeo and Juliet. How do you?