It has been my experience that the more relevant information I can give my students to help them understand the culture Shakespeare wrote it, the more my students can concentrate on understanding the language and literary techniques. With this in mind I have identified three key ideas to teach before beginning the play.
- A woman's role during Shakespeare's time
- The role of fairies during Shakespeare's time
- The myth of Pyramus and Thisbe.
I have found that by introducing my students to these concepts before the play, they are better equipped in understanding how the female characters are treated, the antics of the fairies, and the "play within a play" at the end.
During this activity, students will be placed in groups, and each group will be given a separate article. Students will work together and individually to create a study guide for that article. The next day, students will be placed with two different students who have had two different articles as well. Each student will be responsible for teaching the other two students within their new three-person group the information from the study guide. At the end of the day, each student will be prepared for an assessment that includes questions on all three article.
This resource includes:
1. Lesson plan with links to 3 articles:
" Overview of the Elizabethan Fairy"
" Women in the Elizabethan Society"
"Pyramus and Thisbe"
2. PowerPoint that contains directions for each step of the activities and built-in timers of 20 minutes and 30 minutes to keep students on task and motivated.
3. Graphic organizer to help teacher in dividing students into groups each day.
4.. Assessment that can be printed and handed out
5. Answer key along with a note about why each question is important and how it will come up later in the play