Introduction to Shakespeare Activities to Make Shakespeare Fun, Approachable, and Meaningful

December 6, 2023

Teaching Shakespeare can be a rewarding experience, and incorporating creativity into your approach can make the material more engaging for students. Here are seven creative ways to begin a unit on William Shakespeare or a unit that studies his literature...

1. Create a scavenger hunt with facts related to Shakespeare's life, works, and the Elizabethan era. Hide or hang the facts around the classroom or school. Then, have students hunt for the facts. As they find each fact, have them add the information to their notes as they build background on Shakespeare. 

This activity gets students up and moving while providing them a historical base for their Shakespeare studies. Need ready-made facts? Find them here!

2. Have students choose a character from one of Shakespeare's plays and write a modern-day monologue for that character. This activity allows students to connect with the characters on a personal level and showcase their understanding of the language and themes.

3. Make learning about Shakespeare especially engaging with a doodle poster. Have students fill the poster with facts about William Shakespeare. Then, have students glue the pages together to make an extra-long infographic. As students color in their doodle poster, they'll be exposed to facts one more time. This activity makes building background creative and fun. Grab a ready-made doodle poster HERE.

4. Ask students to imagine that Shakespeare and his characters had social media profiles. They can create Facebook pages, Instagram accounts, or Twitter feeds for characters like Romeo, Juliet, or Hamlet. This activity encourages creativity and helps students relate Shakespearean themes to contemporary communication. 

5. Give students a chance to investigate one of Shakespeare's sonnet. You can assign a sonnet or have students choose one of their own. Then, guide them through analyzing the poem with a Doodle Poem Analysis one-pager. This guide makes analyzing the poem approachable and creative. It's also a great way to get students to share their poem analysis with others. You can download the FREE Doodle Poetry Analysis HERE.

6. Use a simple craft like this "Will's Quill" activity to get students learning about Shakespeare. First, have them research facts about Shakespeare. They should also find a quote that they like from Shakespeare. Students will add their work to feather shapes. Then, they'll cut out and glue the feathers together to make a quill just like one William Shakespeare would have used. Find everything you need to do this activity HERE.

7. Devote a day to immerse students in the Elizabethan era. Encourage them to come dressed in costumes from that time, play Renaissance music, and even serve Elizabethan-inspired snacks. This thematic approach can set the stage for a deeper exploration of Shakespeare's works.


These ideas are designed to make learning about Shakespeare fun and relatable. Taking the time to make Shakespeare approachable can be a great way to foster a lifelong appreciation for his work. 

I hope you give some of these ideas a try. (And don't forget get to save a TON of TIME with the William Shakespeare Doodle and Do resource!)

Thanks for stopping by,

Mary Beth

P.S. Find more ways to make learning fun here.

© Copyright 2017 Brainwaves Instruction. All Rights Reserved. Web Development by Steven L Smith. Design by Ruby & Sass.