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Day 1:

  • Begin with an introduction to Shakespeare in the form of a class discussion.
    • What do you know about Shakespeare?
    • What have you read by Shakespeare? Was it easy or difficult? Why?
    • Why do so many people find Shakespeare difficult?
    • Why do you think he is so well respected that his plays are on every high school reading list? And most Universities offer several courses just on his works?
    • What is the difference between tragedy and comedy?
    • What is a universal story?
  • Have students continue to think about the book by instructing them to look at the cover, read the back of the book, skim through it etc.
    • What can you guess about the play by looking at the book?
    • What makes you want to read it? What questions do you have?
    • What makes you not want to read it? Is this something you can overcome?
  • Homework assignment - Journal Write: What are your views on love and marriage? How do you view the roles of women and men in love relationships? Who should ask whom to get married? Out on a date? Is love necessary for marriage? Discuss these responses briefly with the class (10 min) This can be done at the beginning of class the following day.

Day 2-4

  • Brief discussion of Journal Write. (5 min)
  • Define Sexism-Students should look up several definitions and share them with the whole class. Post the best definition on the wall and leave up for the duration of the project.
  • Students are assigned to small groups to research the way that women have been treated at several stages in history and make a presentation to the class on their findings. Student handout. pdf file. Take students to the library to complete this research and have the librarian assist students in their research. Go over methods of determining reliability and perspective on the Internet.
  • It should take two days to research and plan and one day to present. During the presentation students should complete their note chart pdf file . During their research this is the guide that they will use to take notes on their groups assigned time period.
  • Homework: Choose a time period and issue that you feel strongly about and write a petition or letter to an authority figure arguing about this issue. Use strong persuasive writing techniques to write a strong argument about the rights of women in history. (due in three days)
  • An alternative to this project that seems to cover similar objectives is a lesson plan called "The Good and the Badde: Are Stereotypes a Perfect Fit?" This lesson can be found on the Folger Institute website. Teaching Shakespeare: Lesson Plan

Day 5

  • Read act 1.1 aloud, assign parts to students. Discuss the language as a whole class. Make sure they understand that they don’t have to understand every word to understand the play. That the language is difficult for everyone, even the teacher and that they need only try to understand the main ideas. "Start the Play" pdf file Activity is an option for small groups.
  • Complete the Two Sisters pdf file activity. Alternatively students can read aloud and the teacher can lead a class discussion of the issues that come up in the play.
  • Homework: Journal Write: What kind of guy is Petruchio? How do you know?

Day 6

  • Students should read Act 1.2 in small groups and then complete the activities on Act 1.2 pdf file
  • Homework: Journal Write: Is this a sexist play? How do you know?

Day 7

  • In very small groups (2-3) make a character chart-Who’s who in Padua pdf file Who is pretending to be whom and who is in love with whom? This should be a visual chart and the best one will be photocopied and distributed to the entire class. The others should be posted on the bulletin board to give students more visual help in understanding the play. A teacher created Answer Sheet pdf fileis provided. Student Work. pdf file
  • Homework: If you were making a new film production of Taming of the Shrew who would you cast as Kate? Bianca? Petruchio? Lucentio? Why? Say something about these characters that shows who they are.

Day 8

  • Discuss casting choices for the characters with the class. Who would you cast as Kate? Bianca? Petruchio? Why? Give a short quiz on Act 1. pdf file
  • Read act 2 aloud in class or listen to the audiocassettes. Discuss the scene as you go to check for understanding and interpretation.
  • Homework: Assign journal write: Does Kate envy Bianca? What do you make of their relationship?

Day 9

  • Character Study Assignment pdf file in small groups. I write the names of the main characters on index cards and then pass them out to students at random to assure that each character has a chart and to form groups. This also works well when assigning this as a homework assignment and is done individually rather than in small groups.
  • Student work example pictures:
  • Students analyze a character and create a visual to better understand that characters motivations and actions. As students read have them collect further quotes that illustrate the character and post them on the charts, which should be hung around the room for the duration of the class study.

Day 10

  • Read the rest of Act 2 with tapes & discuss. Complete questions on Act 2. pdf file
  • Homework: Complete questions review act 2

Day 11

  • Start class with a short quiz on Act 2. pdf file
  • Give promptbook assignment pdf file and pages lines 177-313 pdf fie and have them make promptbooks and draw the stage for the meeting of Kate and Use. There is a detailed lesson plan pdf file for this assignment.
  • Homework journal write: Do Kate and Petruchio belong together? Explain. The next day have students respond aloud to this.

Day 12

  • Show film version of Act 2.1, discuss how Zefferelli choose to show this scene. How is it similar/different from their versions?
    • What elements of this scene could not be shown on a stage?
    • What is left out? Do you miss it?
    • What is added? Is it helpful?
    • How is his version similar to your promptbook pages? How is it different?
  • Have them read Act 3.1 if time or for homework.

Day 13

  • Have a student summarize the scene and then have students read 3.2 in small groups and complete the activities. pdf file
  • Women’s Lib pdf file Activity as a whole class.
  • Homework Journal Write: Is this play sexist? Explain.

Day 14

  • Quiz on Act 2 & 3. pdf file
  • Show the film for act 4.1 and read along with the book. Have students mark in pencil (lightly) what lines are left out of the film. Discuss why directors cut the script and what they think is lost in doing this.
  • Discuss Petruchio’s behavior.
  • Homework: have students read the scene over again and write their observations in their journals.

Day 15

  • Read act 4.2 aloud and discuss questions pdf file in small groups.
  • Homework: Read Act 4.3

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Day 16

  • Read Act 4.3 Discuss what Kate is thinking in this scene and why she is so quiet.
  • How does Petruchio twist Kate’s words around to frustrate her? Read 4.4 and assign questions Act 4.3. pdf file

Day 17

  • Read 4.4 aloud and complete journal write – Is Kate tamed? Discuss this. Discussion questions Act 4.4 pdf file. If time have students read Act 4.5 aloud and complete questions, pdf file or the questions can be used for homework.

Day 18 & 19

  • Read 5.1 – 5.2 and discuss. Assign students to read to the end of the play and write what they think of the ending.
  • Discuss Kate’s last speech, Is this play sexist? What would you leave the audience with at the end?
  • Quiz on Act 5 pdf file

Day 20

  • Show the final scene of the film and assign the interpretive essay pdf fileassignment.
  • Handout "Is This Play Sexist?" pdf filefrom: Fynes-Clinton and Perry Mills, Ed., The Taming of the Shrew, Cambridge University Press, 1984.
  • Discuss the scene and revisit the question of is this play sexist?

Day 21-26

  • Hand out the Staging the Play pdf file worksheet from Fynes-Clinton and Perry Mills, Ed., The Taming of the Shrew, Cambridge University Press, 1984.
  • Assign Groups and complete the performance assignment. pdf file
  • Students should use video equipment to perform present these scenes and should be instructed to use the Internet to conduct research the costumes and language style of the time period they choose to perform.
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Urban Dreams
OUSD Curriculum Unit
Taming of the Shrew
by William Shakespeare
Subject: English/ELD
Grade Level: 10th

Lesson Plan Author: Sydney King
School: Skyline High School
Organization: OUSD