Teaching Characterization with a Fun Shakespeare Lesson Plan
Teaching characterization has never been more fun!
Mr. Endcareer picked Tuesday to observe my class. “A good day for teaching characterization with Romeo and Juliet characterization lessons,” I thought. Three minutes into class–23 students had fallen asleep. My teaching characterization with Romeo and Juliet characterization lessons weren’t going well. Eight minutes later–the 14 remaining students dozed off. Twelve minutes later–Mr. Endcareer fell asleep.
It was time to come up with some fun Shakespeare lesson plans for teaching characterization.
ELA Common Core Standards Covered
This fun Shakespeare lesson plan for teaching characterization can be applied to multiple pieces of literature. The lesson satisfies the following Common Core Standards.
RL.9-10.1 Cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.
RL.9-10.3 Analyze how complex characters (e.g., those with multiple or conflicting motivations) develop over the course of a text, interact with other characters, and advance the plot or develop the theme.
Character Interview Procedures
Students will conduct an interview asking four basic questions while pointing to an imaginary television. Here are the four questions.
- In this scene it looks as though you’re very angry, what is going on here?
- In this scene it looks as though you’re very sad, what is going on here?
- In this scene it looks as though you’re very afraid, what is going on here?
- In this scene it looks as though you’re very happy, what is going on here?
Conduct a sample interview with the class. Remind students of the following:
- Each character believes he or she is right. Answer accordingly.
- Students must understand what motivates each character.
- You may wish to prepare students by reviewing characters.
- Model an interview for the class. Be sure to pick an “entertaining” student to interview.
- Put students in pairs.
- Instruct students to list 3-5 characteristics for the character they are going to portray. Cite specific examples from the play.
- Instruct them to conduct an interview to a Romeo and Juliet character using the above questions.
- Ask for volunteers to demonstrate their interview in front of the class.
- Don’t grade the interview unless you provide a clear and specific rubric. This activity is more suited as a review.
- Assessment can be done on students’ ability to use evidence for analysis.
Romeo and Juliet Lesson Plans
Students will respond positively to Romeo and Juliet if they are engaged.