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Introduction to Shakespeare: Language, Historical context and Performance

Mentor Artist Melissa Briggs worked with the seventh grade social studies teachers at Davidson Middle School to design an introduction to Shakespearean Theatre which would mesh with their 7th grade World History unit on the Renaissance.

Key words from the history lessons were incorporated into the work, and related Shakespeare to the student’s current lives as wells as our global situation. This unit prepared the students for next year, and their 8th grade introduction to Romeo & Juliet.

Engaging exercises included Shakespearean death scenes, a monologue performance, Shakespeare’s vernacular versus our own (which highlighting the parallels to HipHop). The project culminated in a tableaux performance of Romeo & Juliet, which highlighted the experience for students!

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