© 2014 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
 
Teaching Guide

Teaching Romeo and Juliet

Wherefore art thou, Shmooper?

GO TO STUDENT LEARNING GUIDE

Like what you see? We've also got a complete Online Course about Romeo and Juliet, with three weeks worth of readings, activities, assignments, and quizzes.

__________________________________________________________________________________________________

Teaching guide, teaching guide, wherefore art thou teaching guide? You found it, and good thing, too. Teaching this play for the hundredth time can be draining, but we've got ways to keep it fresh.

In this guide you will find

  • a list of critical vocabulary terms so students aren't anguished by the beguiling text of this renowned play.
  • lessons using music lyrics of modern songs to explore the play's themes.
  • pop culture references from Stephenie Meyer to Claire Danes to an all-dude production of Romeo and Juliet.

What light through your computer screen breaks? It is the east, and Shmoop is your sun!

What's Inside Shmoop's Literature Teaching Guides

Shmoop is a labor of love from folks who love to teach. Our teaching guides will help you supplement in-classroom learning with fun, engaging, and relatable learning materials that bring literature to life.

Inside each guide you'll find quizzes, activity ideas, discussion questions, and more—all written by experts and designed to save you time. Here are the deets on what you get with your teaching guide:

  • 13-18 Common Core-aligned activities to complete in class with your students, including detailed instructions for you and your students. 
  • Discussion and essay questions for all levels of students.
  • Reading quizzes for every chapter, act, or part of the text.
  • Resources to help make the book feel more relevant to your 21st-century students.
  • A note from Shmoop's teachers to you, telling you what to expect from teaching the text and how you can overcome the hurdles.

With your purchase, you'll get unlimited access for 12 months. And if you like what you see, you can subscribe to all 200+ Teaching Guides for just $19.84/month.

Instructions for You

Objective: Your students will adapt one or more scenes from Romeo and Juliet into a journalistic piece using the news medium of their choice (newspaper article, news broadcast, gossip magazine story, etc.).

Length of Lesson: 2 class periods with a week or two in between for students to complete the assignment.

Materials Needed: 

  • Internet access
  • Word processing software 
  • [Optional] video cameras and movie editing software for students who decide to create TV news stories*

*If any of your students go this route, be sure to make arrangements to show their video projects in class.

Step 1: In class, discuss the parameters of the assignment and review various mediums of journalism and mass communication. (Check out Shmoop’s “History of Journalism in America”  for ideas.)

Step 2: Following the discussion, have your students read the BBC’s “60 Second Shakespeare”  (a tabloid-style article that adapts Romeo and Juliet into a sensational news story) and then watch the opening clip from director Baz Luhrmann’s 1996 film, Romeo + Juliet , where Shakespeare’s Prologue is transformed into a news broadcast.

Step 3: Encourage your students to consider which events in the play are “newsworthy” (the lovers’ suicides, Romeo crashing the Capulet ball, Juliet’s engagement to Paris, the swordfight between Tybalt and Mercutio, Romeo and Juliet’s secret elopement, etc.). If they need a refresher on the play’s events, they can check out Shmoop’s “Summary” of the plot.

Step 4: Instruct your students to choose from the following formats and create a news piece based on one or more events from the play:

  • Front page newspaper article for The New York Times or a favorite local paper.
  • Article for a celebrity gossip rag, like People magazine or Us Weekly magazine.
  • Video for a news broadcast (think CNN, Fox News, etc.)
  • Tabloid-style video for TMZ, Entertainment Tonight, or E! News.

Here are some guidelines you can give your students to help them complete the assignment.

  1. Be sure to include the 5 W’s (and 1 H): Who?, What?, Where?, When?, Why?, and How?
  2. You can browse Shmoop’s “Best of the Web”  and “Trivia” links for pictures and video footage to use in projects.
  3. Remember: accuracy is as important as creativity. 
  4. Keep in mind your target audiences and chosen news mediums as you create your news stories. For example, if you're writing an article about Romeo crashing the Capulet’s party for People magazine, the tone and style of the piece will be a lot different than, say, a New York Times front page story about the couples’ suicides.

Step 5: Give students a day to present their work to the class.

(California English Language Arts Standards Met: 9th and 10th grade: Literary Response and Analysis 3.1, 3.2, 3.3, 3.8; Writing Applications 2.2; Written and Oral English Language Conventions 1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 1.4, 1.5; Listening and Speaking 1., 1.7; Speaking Applications 2.1, 2.3, 2.4)

TEKS Standards: §110.31. English Language Arts and Reading, English I b: 13A, 13B, 18A, 18B, 19, 25

Instructions for Your Students

Ever thought that Romeo and Juliet seems like the kind of story that would make front page headlines? Here’s your chance to put your journalistic skills to work. 

 In this assignment, you’ll adapt one or more scenes from Romeo and Juliet into a news piece that you’ll present to your class.

Step 1: First, let's talk news. In class you'll discuss the varied ways we get our news today as well as some of the more traditional outlets that have been around for ages.

Step 2: For inspiration, check out this “60 Second Shakespeare”  piece, a tabloid-style article that adapts Romeo and Juliet into a news story. Then watch this clip from Baz Luhrmann’s film, Romeo + Juliet (1996), where Shakespeare’s Prologue is transformed into a broadcast news piece.

Step 3: Decide which events in the play are “newsworthy” (the lovers’ suicides, Romeo crashing the Capulet ball, Juliet’s engagement to Paris, the swordfight between Tybalt and Mercutio, Romeo and Juliet’s secret elopement, etc.). If you need a refresher on the play’s events, check out Shmoop’s “Summary” of the plot.

Step 4: Choose from the following formats to create a single news piece based on one or more events from the play:

  • Front page newspaper article for The New York Times or a favorite local paper.
  • Article for a celebrity gossip rag, like People magazine or Us Weekly magazine.
  • Video for a news broadcast (think CNN, Fox News, etc.)
  • Tabloid-style video for TMZ, Entertainment Tonight, or E! News.

Guidelines

  1. Be sure to include the 5 W’s (and 1 H): Who?, What?, Where?, When?, Why?, and How?
  2. You can browse Shmoop’s “Best of the Web”  and “Trivia” links for pictures and video footage to use in projects.
  3. Remember: accuracy is as important as creativity. 
  4. Keep in mind your target audience and chosen news medium as you create your news story. For example, if you're writing an article about Romeo crashing the Capulet’s party for People magazine, the tone and style of the piece will be a lot different than, say, a New York Times front page story about the couples’ suicides.

Step 5: And we're live in 3 ... 2 ... 1. Put on your best news anchor voice, because it's time to present your news story to the class.

Already have a license?
CLICK HERE to sign in!

OPTIONS FOR PURCHASE

I am buying...
I am buying...
For teacher(s).
Price: $14.92
Good things come
in affordable packages.
GET A QUOTE FOR YOUR
SCHOOL OR DISTRICT
Teachers, want access to all courses for your own use at a low monthly rate?
Subscribe for only as long as you need.
Share

Common Core Standards  

The following standards are covered in this course:

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.1
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.3
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.6
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.7
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.5
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.2
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.4
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.10
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.9
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.1
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.2
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.4
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.5
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.3
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.6
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.11-12.1
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.11-12.3
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.11-12.5
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.11-12.6
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.11-12.4
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.11-12.2
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.11-12.7
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.11-12.10
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.11-12.9
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.11-12.1
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.11-12.2
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.11-12.4
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.11-12.5
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.11-12.3
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.11-12.6
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.2
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.3
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.6
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.9
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.1
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.5
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.7
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.10
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.9-10.4
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.11-12.2
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.11-12.3
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.11-12.6
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.11-12.1
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.11-12.5
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.11-12.7
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.11-12.9
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.11-12.10
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.W.11-12.4
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.1
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.2
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.3
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.4
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.5
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.7
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.6
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.8
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.9-10.10
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.1
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.2
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.3
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.4
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.5
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.7
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.6
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RI.11-12.10
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.9-10.1
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.9-10.4
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.9-10.5
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.9-10.3
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.9-10.6
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.9-10.2
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.11-12.1
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.11-12.4
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.11-12.5
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.11-12.3
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.11-12.6
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.11-12.2
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.L.1
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.L.3
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.L.4
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.L.5
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.L.6
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.L.2
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.R.1
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.R.4
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.R.7
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.R.10
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.R.2
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.R.9
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.R.5
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.R.6
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.SL.1
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.SL.2
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.SL.3
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.SL.6
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.SL.4
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.SL.5
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.3
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.4
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.5
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.6
CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.W.10

WANT MORE HELP TEACHING ROMEO AND JULIET?

Check out all the different parts of our corresponding learning guide.

Intro    Summary    Themes    Quotes    Characters    Analysis    Questions    Photos    Quizzes    Flashcards    Movie    Best of the Web    Write Essay    
back to top