High school Shakespeare. Love it or hate it? I know many (including myself) that dreaded the high school Shakespeare units. But why? I think it’s because the language was unfamiliar and therefore hard to understand, and the resources used to study them were dry and of little help. Luckily for our children we have many great resources for helping us understand Shakespeare.
As a homeschooling parent I believe one thing that is making learning and understanding Shakespeare easier for me now, as well as my children is that we don’t wait until high school to expose them to it. There are many great resources out that are putting Shakespeare on a level for younger children to understand. I believe it is much easier to tackle full Shakespearean language when you already have a grasp of the characters and plot line of the stories.
Resources for tackling Shakespeare from the beginning (at any age)
The Basics of Shakespeare
- April 23rd, 1564 is the proposed date of Shakespeare’s birth, although no one knows for sure.
- Married Ann Hathaway in 1585
- Had a daughter and a set of twins
- 1599 built the largest open air amphitheater in London, the Globe theater.
- Though little is known about William Shakespeare’s personal life, his works such as “Hamlet,” “Romeo and Juliet,” and “King Lear,” have influenced literature and theater for over 400 years.
Shakespeare Biography Resources
- bio. William Shakespeare
- William Shakespeare Mini Biography
- Shakespeare: The Biography
- Shakespeare: The World as Stage
- Shakespeare: His Life, Art and Characters
- All’s Well That Ends Well
- As You Like It
- Comedy of Errors
- Love’s Labour’s Lost
- Measure for Measure
- Merchant of Venice
- Merry Wives of Windsor
- Midsummer Night’s Dream
- Much Ado about Nothing
- Taming of the Shrew
- Twelfth Night
- Two Gentlemen of Verona
- Winter’s Tale
- Antony and Cleopatra
- Julius Caesar
- King Lear
- Romeo and Juliet
- Timon of Athens
- Titus Andronicus
- Troilus and Cressida
There are 154 Shakespearean Sonnets. Rather than list them all I have linked to Shakespeare Facts which has a complete numbered list as well as each complete sonnet.
High School Shakespeare Series
In this High School Shakespeare series I will be covering each one of these topics and linking to them below.
Day One: Introduction and Overview (this post)
Day Two: Why Teach Shakespeare?
Day Three: Teaching Shakespeare’s Sonnets
Day Four: Romeo & Juliet
Day Five: Studying Shakespeare’s Hamlet
Bonus: A Mid Summer Night’s Dream
Other High School Topics of Interest