#CelebrateWithDE – Shakespeare’s Birthday

Let’s celebrate the birthday of William Shakespeare with some of the best resources available: a curated collection of all things Shakespeare, a virtual field trip that commemorated the anniversary of his death, and full performances of his plays and sonnets. Discovery Education has all this and more to help you share the wonder of Shakespeare with your students.


Featured Resources

Content Collection: William Shakespeare
Discovery Education Streaming
Grades K-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12, Content Collection

Learn about the life and legacy of William Shakespeare, the man considered to be the greatest writer of English language and literature.
 
Famous Authors: William Shakespeare: 1564-1616
(Canadian Version)
Discovery Education Streaming, Social Studies Techbook
Grades 9-12, Full Video

Reviews Shakespeare’s birthplace, life in London, effect on the theater, and recognition as the greatest dramatist of all time.
 
Virtual Field Trip: Shakespeare 400
(Canadian Version)
Discovery Education Streaming
Grades K-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12, Full Video

On Friday, April 22, 2016, Discovery Education celebrated the life and legacy of William Shakespeare on the eve of the 400th anniversary of his death. The experience includes tours of significant locations, rarely seen documents, and comments from actor Ian McKellan about the power of students experiencing Shakespeare on stage.


The Plays

WordPlay – for High School Students
Discovery Education features one of the most useful and artistic approaches to Shakespeare in education. Brought to life by celebrated directors and actors, WordPlay performances are double screen experiences: one side of the screen is a crisp, professionally acted, full performance, and the other side of the screen is the full text. Students (and teachers) may be surprised to hear the depth of emotion and humor in Shakespeare’s words. This series eases literal understanding, so students can get on with interpretation at deeper levels. Note that the plays are performed in their entirety and some content is mature.
 
WordPlay: MacBeth
(Canadian Version)
Discovery Education Streaming
Grades 9-12, Full Video

One of Shakespeare’s most famous tragedies and this blogger’s favorite! Preview before sharing in class.
 
WordPlay: A Midsummer Night’s Dream
(Canadian Version)
Discovery Education Streaming
Grades 9-12, Full Video

Famous comedy. Preview before sharing in class.
 
WordPlay: Romeo and Juliet
(Canadian Version)
Discovery Education Streaming
Grades 9-12, Full Video

Iconic tragic romance. Preview before sharing in class.


The Sonnets

Discovery Education Streaming
Grades 6-8, 9-12, Audio

With a nod to National Poetry Month, celebrate Shakespeare’s sonnets! Teenagers, especially, may find the drama…and melodrama…relatable. Discovery Education has recordings of 22 of Shakespeare’s sonnets and their memorable lines, including, from Sonnet 104 (Canadian Version): for as you were when first your eye I eyed; and from Sonnet 35 (Canadian Version): no more be grieved of what thou hast done, roses have thorns and silver fountains mud; and, of course, from Sonnet 130 (Canadian Version): my mistress eyes are nothing like the sun. Go ahead: play the Sting song in class! Talk about the comparison. Take it a step further by challenging your students to find common titles or phrases among the lines (e.g., Remembrance of Things Past).


SOS Strategy

Spotlight on Strategies: Poetry Slam
(Canadian Version)
All Services
Grades K-2, 3-5, 6-8, 9-12, Instructional Strategy

This teaching strategy encourages students to enhance their oral readings by using imagery, audio, and an intentional focus combined with drama. Students watch a content-related video and, using new knowledge, create a performance. Try using this strategy with content about William Shakespeare and Haiku, as it is presented, or challenge your students to work with sonnets and supporting media.

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