Role Modeling Literature Circles with King Lear

Lesson by Mary Ellen Dakin

We need to explicitly model the roles in literature circles multiple times before most students will be prepared to assume responsibility for the authentic reading, speaking, and listening that Shakespeare in literature circles requires. This realization reshaped my approach to King Lear. Knowing that we would not begin to meet in literature circle groups until the midpoint of the play, I handed out the revised role sheets before beginning Act 1 and explicitly connected the elements of each day’s lesson to the active reading roles students would assume in Act 3.

Click here to view Figure 3.2, an interactive version of the chart published in Chapter 3 of Reading Shakespeare Film First (2012) that includes links to specific activities and illustrations.

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