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The Tempest

William Shakespeare

Discover teaching ideas and lesson planning inspiration through our range of resources, activities and other supporting materials on Shakespeare's The Tempest.

About the play

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The Tempest on the Shakespeare Learning Zone

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Live Lesson (2023)

You can watch our Live Lesson on The Tempest on demand, featuring cast and creatives from our 2023 production including Director Elizabeth Freestone and actors Alex Kingston (Prospero), Heledd Gwynn (Ariel) and Tommy Sim’aan (Caliban).

INSET Days on The Tempest

"Fantastic workshop with so many useful activities, thank you for a great session that will enhance the children’s learning." - Primary Teacher in Nottingham

Book an INSET day with the RSC on teaching The Tempest  for Primary, Key Stage 3, GCSE or A-level. Our INSET Days explore techniques used in our rehearsal rooms and and look at how you can use these in the classroom to bring Shakespeare to life.

Find out more

Resources and activities

The Tempest opens with a storm, after which survivors of the shipwreck are marooned on an island inhabited by the powerful Magician Prospero, his daughter Miranda and his servants Ariel and Caliban.

For young people of all ages, this play is a fantastic way to explore the concepts of freedom and power as well as looking at a rnage of themes including:

  • Forgiveness

Download free resources

  • Themes Resource
  • The Tempest School Synopsis
  • The Tempest Teacher Pack 2023
  • The Tempest Teacher Pack 2016
  • Watch key scenes and Text Detective films on our Learning Youtube channel

the tempest creative writing lesson

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Shakespeare Learning Zone

Students will find many resources in our Shakespeare Learning Zone , including scene by scene analysis, activities on character relationships, in depth scene studies and PEE grids. These resources are also perfect to be used by teachers in the classroom.

Studying Shakespeare? Then you'll love our  SHAKESPEARE LEARNING ZONE! Discover loads of facts, videos and in-depth information about Shakespeare's plays.

the tempest creative writing lesson

Really get to grips with the stories, settings and characters of Shakespeare's plays. Unlock his language using the same techniques our actors use in rehearsals.

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the tempest creative writing lesson

Shakespeare’s story of the betrayal of Prospero; the bookish Duke of Milan who uses magic to try to reclaim what's his from his brother Antonio

the tempest creative writing lesson

Studying The Tempest? Visit the SHAKESPEARE LEARNING ZONE to discover loads of facts, videos and info about the play

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The Tempest

Magic, mystery, shipwreck, comedy and confusion! This popular Shakespeare play is a great introduction to Shakespeare for younger key stage three English students. You'll find a range of classroom resources on Shakespeare’s The Tempest to support your lesson planning alongside fun ideas for group activities, games and quizzes like Tempest Taboo or Bingo. 

Whether you are focusing on lesser character studies (Duke of Milan, Antonio, Ferdinand, Stephano, Trinculo) and comparing the language in key speeches, or looking at the relationships between the central characters of Caliban, Prospero, Miranda, Sebastian and Ariel, download our engaging lesson resources to support learners with their understanding of William Shakespeare’s powerful play. All our resources are written and generously shared by experienced teachers, so they are tried and tested in the classroom. You'll find debate and letter writing tasks alongside creative and drama activities such as direct your own scene or design your own island to bring students' understanding of plot, structure and language to life. 

For a comprehensive resource pack, including teaching resources, worksheets, PowerPoints, sequencing tasks and lesson plans, try our The Tempest teaching pack , designed specifically for key stage 3 students with a mix of analytical, creative and drama activities. 

You can also find a range of resources on Shakespeare’s life and context .

If you are teaching younger KS3 students, you might also like our A Midsummer Night’s Dream   teaching pack, or check out our GCSE Shakespeare library .

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"The Tempest" Overview of Themes & 5 Classroom Activities for High School

  • Peter Boysen
  • Categories : High school english lesson plans grades 9 12
  • Tags : High school lesson plans & tips

"The Tempest" Overview of Themes & 5 Classroom Activities for High School

Guiding Themes

The language in William Shakespeare’s plays is difficult for modern readers to understand, particularly struggling high school students, and so a popular way to help these readers has been to develop classroom activities on Shakespeare’s plays. The Tempest expresses the following themes, or major ideas, and one or more of these is the basis for all of the activities in the following sections:

1. If you admit your wrongdoing, you will find redemption. Every one of the wrongdoers in the play admits their misdeeds, and gain redemption at the end.

2. It’s best to forgive and move on. Prospero finally decides to let go of his anger regarding the past.

3. Your best friends are there when they need to be. Thanks to Gonzalo, Prospero and his daughter make it through their trails in the sea.

4. When people explore new lands, they often abuse the indigenous populations. This might seem to be an oddly modern theme for Shakespeare, but he often dealt with themes past his time, like the racism that faced Othello. Also, remember that colonization started more than 200 years before Shakespeare was born, so these concerns were contemporary for him. Some scholars have suggested that Caliban is a symbol for native groups of people that the Europeans mistreated.

Critical Activities

Classroom activities on Shakespeare’s plays, The Tempest among them, can take on a number of forms. These activities are the most analytical and may work best with AP-level classes, or with senior-level English.

1. What separates the theater from reality? This article is a public-domain lecture about ways to interpret the play, and one of the primary arguments suggests that Prospero’s altering of reality expresses the differences between the theater and the real world. What do audiences leave behind when they enter the theater? What assumptions change? Have your students read the lecture, either in small groups or as a homework assignment, and lead a group discussion on the nature of the stage.

2. What is the proper relationship between ruler and subjects? Have your students locate passages describing Caliban’s relationship with Prospero, and compare them with passages showing Prospero’s way of dealing with his subjects in Milan. In what ways is his leadership style the same? What errors does he make in both places?

Creative Activities

In situations where you are dealing with struggling readers who are having a difficult time accessing the text on an analytical level, it can be useful to bring in more creative activities that give them access to the themes involved. Once they have an idea of what is going on and what the author is trying to say, then it becomes easier for them to follow the text. This is the goal for all of these classroom activities on Shakespeare’s plays. The Tempest offers quite a few different opportunities to make these activities meaningful and entertaining.

1. Have students bring five objects that relate to each of the themes listed above. These objects can be pictures, drawings, maps, cutouts from magazines, or small three-dimensional objects. Then, split your class into groups of three, and provide each group with a piece of posterboard. Have the groups use their objects to make collages expressive of The Tempest . You can also have students do this individually.

2. Have your students set up Facebook pages for one or more of the following characters from The Tempest : Prospero, Miranda, Ariel, Caliban, Ferdinand, Alonso, Antonio, Sebastian and Gonzalo. As you read the play, this can turn into a multi-week project as students go in and update the “status” and events for their characters. Evaluate this based on how accurately the pages represent the personalities of the characters, and the events of the plot.

3. Forbidden Planet came out in 1956 and is a sci-fi adaptation of The Tempest . Instead of Caliban, the ruler has built Robby the Robot. Show portions of this movie, either in parallel with portions of a more literal film adaptation or with readings from specific passages from the novel, and ask students how the movie writers have adapted Shakespeare’s ideas. Then, after you have finished the play, have your students write an adapted script of one of the major scenes of the play, but also in a modern genre.

  • Teaching secondary
  • UK history and literature
  • Shakespeare

Shakespeare's The Tempest

The Tempest is one of a series of lesson plans to accompany the short animated videos of five of Shakespeare's plays on LearnEnglish Teens .

the tempest creative writing lesson

Introduction

In this lesson, students will watch a video about Shakespeare’s The Tempest. There is an introduction activity where students discuss magical powers, they will watch a video and check their understanding of the story, and finally students work in pairs to write a message in a bottle from Miranda, one of the characters from the play.

  • To practise listening skills.
  • To practise speaking skills.
  • To develop writing skills with a descriptive text.
  • To develop vocabulary skills.

Teens 13 years old +

45 minutes or 3 shorter segments

The lesson plan and worksheet can be downloaded in PDF format below.

Click here  to go to the Shakespeare extension activities or download them below.

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Browse fascinating case studies, research papers, publications and books by researchers and ELT experts from around the world.

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  • Shakespeare School Why You Should Teach The Tempest

Shakespeare School – Why you should teach The Tempest

the tempest creative writing lesson

Helen Mears’ tour of lesser visited Shakespearean works alights upon the Bard’s fantastical and dreamlike swansong…

Helen Mears

About the play

The Tempest is probably Shakespeare’s last solo authored play. It’s traditionally placed amongst the so-called Problem Plays, and therefore hard to pin down to a single genre. It tells the story of Prospero, who after being usurped as Duke of Milan by his brother now lives with his daughter Miranda on an isolated island peopled by spirits and Caliban – the only indigenous inhabitant. He has raised a storm that has left his enemies shipwrecked on the island, and at his mercy…

When should I teach it?

The play could be taught in KS3, but as it’s on the list of Shakespeare plays for GCSE English Literature for both AQA and Edexcel, it could also be taught at KS4. Teaching The Tempest could be a useful precursor to a study of Romeo and Juliet at GCSE, with Miranda and Ferdinand offering a less dangerous take on teenage romance. There are also links to Macbeth in its supernatural elements.

How should I teach it?

At KS3, teaching of the play can focus more on the relationships than the revenge plot. As well as the aforementioned romance, there’s the father and daughter relationship (a recurring feature of the Problem Plays) between Prospero and Miranda, which can be interesting to explore – particularly for how Prospero engineers her meetings with Ferdinand as part of his grand plan.

Then there are the master/ servant relationships Prospero has with Caliban and the spirit Ariel. There’s much to explore in the exchanges Prospero has with these characters, particularly the ways in which he trades insults with Caliban. There’s been a lot of recent research into teaching the play with younger age groups, so you may find that there are many resources available.

For GCSE students, the revenge plot is a good starting point. It highlights the dichotomy between revenge and forgiveness, while also allowing for deeper examination of the parallels between Prospero and Caliban. We are encouraged to sympathise with Prospero for having been usurped by his brother Antonio, and yet Prospero has himself usurped Caliban as ‘ruler’ of the island.

Why should I teach it?

In addition to multiple thematic approaches, the play also offers rich and varied language. Caliban is an excellent character to explore here, being another of Shakespeare’s code-switchers – veering between the plosive, monosyllabic insults he throws at Prospero and Trinculo, and the beautiful verse he uses when extolling the virtues of ‘his’ island. This may suggest an inner nobility, while hinting that he’s the island’s rightful ruler.

Our post-COVID world could potentially give our students a greater understanding of isolation and how it might feel for Prospero and Miranda, trapped as they are on the island. Studying The Tempest also provides excellent opportunities to study historical performance practices. Written late in Shakespeare’s career, the play was likely intended for performance at the indoor Blackfriars Theatre, which Shakespeare’s Acting Troupe acquired in 1609.

His later plays reflect this change of location, with more intimate staging and a greater use of music and song. The Tempest is one of a few plays in the First Folio to feature contemporary stage directions by the company’s scribe.

How does it link to the rest of the curriculum?

A study of The Tempest will have strong links to history, PSHE and current affairs. Prospero’s reign over the island and displacement of its sole indigenous inhabitant links with issues of colonialism – both at the time it was written and to more recent history – and raises questions around identity and the master/slave dynamic.

Is Caliban justified in his revenge plot, merely wanting to take back the land he feels was stolen from him? These questions of identity can lead to discussions concerning the Black Lives Matter movement and its resurgence following the murder of George Floyd.

How can I watch it?

The play is frequently performed, and both The Globe and The RSC have recent productions available on DVD. For an introduction for younger students, there’s the recent Cbeebies version , as well as the ever-popular Animated Tales version .

Browse more resources for Shakespeare Week .

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The Tempest

Write your own story – The Tempest Sci-Fi

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The Folger Shakespeare

The Tempest - Entire Play

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Last updated: Fri, Jul 31, 2015

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A story of shipwreck and magic, The Tempest begins on a ship caught in a violent storm with Alonso, the king of Naples, on board. On a nearby island, the exiled Duke of Milan, Prospero, tells his daughter, Miranda, that he has caused the storm with his magical powers. Prospero had been banished twelve years earlier when Prospero’s brother, Antonio—also on the doomed ship—conspired with Alonso to become the duke instead. Prospero and Miranda are served by a spirit named Ariel and by Caliban, son of the island’s previous inhabitant, the witch Sycorax.

On the island, castaways from the wreck begin to appear. First is Alonso’s son Ferdinand, who immediately falls in love with Miranda. Prospero secretly approves of their love, but tests the pair by enslaving Ferdinand. After secretly watching Miranda and Ferdinand exchange vows, Prospero releases Ferdinand and consents to their marriage.

Other castaways who appear are Trinculo and Stephano, Alonso’s jester and butler, who join forces with Caliban to kill Prospero and take over the island. The nobles from the ship search for Ferdinand and are confronted with a spectacle including a Harpy, who convinces Alonso that Ferdinand’s death is retribution for Prospero’s exile.

Having all his enemies under his control, Prospero decides to forgive them. Alonso, joyously reunited with his son, restores Prospero to the dukedom of Milan and welcomes Miranda as Ferdinand’s wife. As all except Caliban and Ariel prepare to leave the island, Prospero, who has given up his magic, bids farewell to the island and the audience.

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EFL Snappy Shakespeare Script: The Tempest

EFL Snappy Shakespeare Script: The Tempest Cover

This reduced script tells a story using lines from The Tempest to get students familiar with the material. Perfect for a 20-minute classroom production.

Related resources

Efl creative writing: casting a spell.

This creative writing activity lets students cast their own spell to summon up a tempest.

EFL Creative Writing: Prospero's Island

A creative writing activity in which students write and share their own description of the island in The Tempest.

EFL The Tempest Plot Summary

Plot summary of The Tempest, ideal for for familiarising your students with the what and whereabouts.

EFL A Quiz About The Tempest

Take this quiz to review basic plot points and facts about The Tempest.

EFL The Tempest Soundscape

Have your students create the soundscape of Prospero's island.

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The Tempest Writing to Describe

The Tempest Writing to Describe

Subject: English

Age range: 11-14

Resource type: Worksheet/Activity

Em2702's Shop

Last updated

29 June 2018

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Reading Shakespeare's The Tempest through a Postcolonial Lens

Reading Shakespeare's <i>The Tempest</i> through a Postcolonial Lens

  • Resources & Preparation
  • Instructional Plan
  • Related Resources

Students begin this unit by closely analyzing an excerpt from Mary Rowlandson's The Captive: The True Story Of The Captivity Of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson Among The Indians . They then compare an excerpt of Shakespeare's The Tempest with Aimé Césaire's A Tempest in order to facilitate a postcolonial reading of Shakespeare. Students will arrive at an understanding of the other and will consider how canonical literature may position white characters in relation to those of different ethnicities. Students will question the perspective of writers like Shakespeare and will consider Césaire's A Tempest as a form of resistance to dominant narratives.

Featured Resources

  • Word Choice Analysis Handout : Students use this tool to select and analyze words that are particularly important in conveying an author's point of view toward a subject.
  • Tempest Teacher's Guide with Close Reading Questions : This handout provides teachers additional questions to focus students' close reading and interpretation of The Tempest .
  • Summative Assessment : This prompt with performance standards guides student work at the end of the unit.

From Theory to Practice

Beth Wilson advocates for teaching theory to high school students because "teenagers have the potential to grow significantly by applying critical lenses to texts and the world" (69). When students are able to analyze texts through practice with literary theory in class, they are better able to make sense of and think critically about the media they consume on a daily basis. Kimberly Parker offers a compelling way to guide students to an understanding of postcolonial theory; through Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche's TED talk "The Danger of a Single Story," students are asked to think critically about singular and simplistic narratives about people and places that they may have taken for granted. In this unit, students similarly use Adiche to facilitate discussions are asked to locate the "incompleteness" of stories told by canonical authors like Shakespeare. Students are asked to examine the perspectives of Western authors and critically analyze representations of "the other."

Common Core Standards

This resource has been aligned to the Common Core State Standards for states in which they have been adopted. If a state does not appear in the drop-down, CCSS alignments are forthcoming.

State Standards

This lesson has been aligned to standards in the following states. If a state does not appear in the drop-down, standard alignments are not currently available for that state.

NCTE/IRA National Standards for the English Language Arts

  • 1. Students read a wide range of print and nonprint texts to build an understanding of texts, of themselves, and of the cultures of the United States and the world; to acquire new information; to respond to the needs and demands of society and the workplace; and for personal fulfillment. Among these texts are fiction and nonfiction, classic and contemporary works.
  • 2. Students read a wide range of literature from many periods in many genres to build an understanding of the many dimensions (e.g., philosophical, ethical, aesthetic) of human experience.
  • 3. Students apply a wide range of strategies to comprehend, interpret, evaluate, and appreciate texts. They draw on their prior experience, their interactions with other readers and writers, their knowledge of word meaning and of other texts, their word identification strategies, and their understanding of textual features (e.g., sound-letter correspondence, sentence structure, context, graphics).
  • 5. Students employ a wide range of strategies as they write and use different writing process elements appropriately to communicate with different audiences for a variety of purposes.

Materials and Technology

  • Dictionaries
  • Computer with projection capability
  • Chart paper
  • Opening Activity Discussion Questions
  • Rowlandson Captivity Narrative Excerpt
  • Rowlandson Captivity Narrative Guiding Questions
  • Rowlandson Narrative Response Prompt
  • Written Response Rubric
  • Reader and Facilitator Role Sheet
  • Word Choice Analysis Handout
  • TED Talk Guiding Questions
  • TED Talk Response Prompt
  • Adichie and Rowlandson Reflection
  • The Tempest Excerpt
  • The Tempest Teacher's Guide with Close Reading Questions
  • The Tempest Small Group Questions
  • Caliban Portrayal Response 1
  • A Tempest Excerpt
  • Caliban Portrayal Response 2
  • Comparative Analysis Questions
  • Full Class Discussion Questions
  • Summative Assessment

Mary Rowlandson's captivity narrative is available online through Project Gutenberg. Students will closely analyze Rowlandson's word choice to locate and analyze her understanding of self in relation to the native Americans that she encounters.

Students will view Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's TED talk to facilitate understanding of how narratives or stories may shape perceptions of people and cultures.

Shakespeare's The Tempest is available for students to read online.

Aimé Césaire's A Tempest is available for students to read online.

Preparation

  • Print and make copies of all student handouts. The main texts are available online if students have access to the Internet at all times.
  • Ensure that  "The Danger of a Single Story" by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie can be projeted with sound and audio in the classroom.
  • Become familiar with all texts and The Tempest Teachers Guide with Close Reading Questions .
  • Become familiar with key ideas and questions associated with Post-Colonial Theory.

Student Objectives

Students will

  • discuss how an author draws on the work of another author and consider why authors may draw on or transform works of literature.
  • analyze the impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone.
  • cite strong and thorough textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text, including determining where the text leaves matters uncertain.
  • analyze a particular point of view or cultural experience reflected in a work of literature from outside the United States.

Session One

Begin the lesson by displaying the following prompt:

“Your high school is considering extending the school day by two hours. Who should a journalist interview in order to get an accurate understanding of the pros and cons of this proposition?" Ask students to spend one minute independently brainstorming answers. Note: Tailor this prompt to suit the interests of your group of students.

Ask students to share their responses with a partner, then lead a brief discussion about the prompt using the Opening Activity Discussion Questions :

What would the journalist be missing if he or she interviewed only teachers? Or only students?

How does a student's perspective differ from a teacher's perspective? Why?

What are the potential consequences of ignoring a particular perspective, or giving too much voice to one group of people?

Follow-up if students struggle with this question: Who reads news reports? What would those readers know/not know if journalists didn't bother to share the opinions of teachers or students on this issue? What could happen as a result of this?

Tell students that they will be spending the next several sessions examining authors' perspectives and examining the potential implications of those perspectives. Explain that they will work to accurately locate Mary Rowlandson's perspective in " The Captive ," to analyze word choice, and to discuss how these choices impact meaning and tone. Emphasize that throughout this unit, they are aiming to become stronger critical thinkers and readers.

Share the Rowlandson Narrative Response Prompt that students will be reading at the end of the lesson and go over the evaluation criteria on the Written Response Rubric .

Distribute the text and ask students to read independently at their desks. Share or project the following Guiding Questions :

How are white people portrayed in this text?

How are Native Americans portrayed?

What words stand out to you as you read?

What details seem important?

Circulate while students read to gauge progress and to ask questions such as "Why did you underline that detail?" "What seems to be the gist of this text?" "What stands out to you as you're reading this?"

Ask students to briefly share their understanding of the text with a partner and to create one to two discussion questions.

Lead a whole-class discussion on this text. Call on pairs of students to share their understanding of the text and to ask questions. Encourage peers to build on ideas during the discussion, and require students to use specific textual evidence when sharing ideas during discussion. Additional questions to ask might include:

  • What is happening to the narrator?
  • How are Native Americans portrayed in this text?
  • Circle words that the narrator uses to describe the "Indians" (pause while students do this; teachers may circulate around the room to confirm that students are on task and to check understanding)

Session Two

Explain to students that in order to gain more insight into this text, they will be working with a partner to conduct a close analysis of Rowlandson's specific word choice. Distribute the Word Choice Analysis Tool and go over the example provided.

Assign roles to pairs: a Reader who will read aloud the text to their partner and the Facilitator who will keep the conversation moving by asking the questions on the Reader and Facilitator Role Sheet . Give students time to read and discuss the text.

Ask partners to share their Word Choice Analysis Tool with another partner group and to add to their own notes during their discussion.

Call on each group of four students to share one or two of their strongest examples. Encourage other groups to build on or challenge ideas.

Confirm understanding of the text and concepts before transitioning to the Rowlandson Narrative Response Prompt . Call on additional students to explain their analysis of Rowlandson's tone. Additional questions to ask include

  • What information are we missing from this text?
  • How do you think this text would be different if it were written from the perspective of the Native Americans that Rowlandson is describing? Why?
  • What has influenced Rowlandson's perspective?
  • Why does perspective matter? How does this perspective influence her narrative?

Students should independently answer the Rowlandson Narrative Response Promp t to be collected at the end of the period and returned to students with feedback for the following session. Collect all responses and graphic organizers and review in preparation for the next session.

Session Three

Begin the session by asking a few students to recap the previous sessions and by reading aloud exemplar responses to the Rowlandson Narrative Response Promp t . Re-teach as needed based on quality of responses and based on how well students met the previous objectives.

Tell students that they have started the process critically examining how an author's perspective can influence the stories that they tell and that they will now apply this understanding to an analysis of new texts. It will also be their job to consider the implications of these perspectives.

Post or project the following guiding questions in the classroom:

  • How can an author's perspective shape a narrative?
  • Why does perspective matter?

Share TED Talk Response Prompt with students and confirm that students understand the prompt and evaluation criteria.

Ask students to use the ReadWriteThink Notetaker or preferred method of note-taking.

Tell students that they will be watching a TED talk from Chimamanda Adichie, a contemporary Nigerian author of stories and books like Americanah and Half of a Yellow Sun . Show students copies of these books if you have them in your library. Tell students that this TED talk will help them to address some of our big questions about perspective and narratives.

Project or share copies of the TED Talk Guiding Questions before students view the TED talk .

Play the TED talk , pausing and replaying as needed.

Ask students to share their notes and questions with a partner or small group. Students should add to their own notes during this discussion.

Lead a whole-class discussion about the TED talk . Begin by asking students to share their questions and analysis and by encouraging students to build on others' ideas. Additional questions to ask beyond the guiding questions already given to students include

  • What is the "single story" that we hear about Africa, according to Adichie?
  • What other groups have "single stories?" How do you know? Who tells those stories?
  • What is the problem with the "single story," according to Adichie?

Session Four

Write "The Other" on a piece of chart paper and ask students to list qualities assigned to people who have a "single story." Students should list features like: Stereotyped, presented as different from/inferior to person telling the story (often white subject), treated poorly.

Tell students that they should begin incorporating this academic term into their discussions. Provide examples of how to do this if students are struggling with terminology.

Confirm understanding of the objectives before students complete their TED Talk Response Prompt . Additional questions to ask include

  • What argument is Adichie making in her TED talk ?
  • What evidence does Adichie give to support this argument?

Students independently complete TED Talk Response Prompt .

Ask students to read aloud their responses to a small group of 2-3 other students.

Ask students to write a 1-2 paragraph response to the Adichie and Rowlandson Reflection prompt , to be finished as homework.

Session Five

Begin the session by asking students to read aloud their Adichie and Rowlandson Reflection to a partner. Call on a few students to share their reflection with the class. Encourage students to share questions or sources of confusion and re-teach as necessary.

Share exemplar claims and uses of textual evidence from the previous lesson's TED Talk Response Prompt .

Clarify the connections between this session and learning in previous sessions. Share the Summative Assessment Task and tell students that in order to be successful on this assignment, they will need to be able to analyze specific word choices like they did when reading Mary Rowlandson's captivity narrative in Session One, and they will need to draw on ideas presented in Chimamanda Adichie's TED talk . Students should understand that they have been practicing critical thinking and analysis skills. During this session, they will begin applying those skills to a new text, an excerpt from Shakespeare's The Tempest .

Distribute The Tempest Excerpt . Condsider reading aloud or condense this summary of the play to provide students a basic understanding of the premise of the play and the major characters at this point (Prospero, Miranda, Caliban, Ariel).

Students independently read and annotate The Tempest . Students should conduct a word choice analysis like they did with " The Captivity ."

Ask students to spend one minute discussing their understanding of The Tempest and questions they have about the text.

Session Six

Instruct students to work collaboratively in small groups to conduct a character analysis of Caliban using the Story Mapping Tool.

Lead a whole-class discussion on The Tempest . Call on a presenter in the first group to share their analysis of the story and their group's questions. Then, ask the next group to summarize what the speaker just said and build on their ideas. Repeat this process until all groups have added new insights.

Use the Tempes t Teachers Guide with Close Reading Questions to draw attention to questions that students have not yet addressed.

Distribute the Caliban Portrayal Response 1 and ask students to complete it independently.

For homework, ask students to re-read The Tempest and draw an image of Caliban as he is represented in this text.

Session Seven

Begin the session by asking students to share and explain their drawings of Caliban. Students should refer to specific textual evidence when justifying their portrayal.

Read aloud exemplar claims and use of textual evidence from Caliban Portrayal Response 1 . Re-teach as needed to correct any confusion.

Explain to students that in this session, they will read another version of The Tempest and they will use the following process to build understanding:

  • Read and comprehend A Tempest.
  • Analyze Césaire's representation of Caliban; analyze specific word choice and discuss how this affects meaning and tone.
  • Compare and contrast A Tempest and The Tempest
  • Answer the question: What is Césaire doing with Shakespeare's text and why?
  • Compose an essay that addresses big questions from unit.

Ask students to read and annotate Césaire's A Tempest independently. They should use the Story Mapping Tool to facilitate a close reading of characters in the story.

Ask students work collaboratively in small groups to share their current understanding of A Tempest and to further their understanding of the text.

Facilitate a whole-class discussion on this text. Require students to summarize others' ideas before adding their own and require students to use specific textual evidence to support all claims. Students should also add to their notes during the whole-class discussion.

Then direct students independently complete the Caliban Portrayal 2 . Collect all written responses to evaluate in preparation for the next lesson.

For the next session, ask students to re-read A Tempest and The Tempest . Consider asking students to use a Venn Diagram or other graphic organizer to help students organize comparative notes.

Session Eight

Begin the lesson by asking students to draw an image of Caliban as he's portrayed in Césaire's A Tempest .

Ask students to explain their drawings to a partner; they should use evidence from the text to justify their artistic choices.

Call on students to explain their drawings. Then ask students to discuss specific differences that they noticed between Shakespeare's text and Césaire's text .

Review exemplar responses to the  Caliban Portrayal Response 1 and then return to the objectives that shared the previous day.

Facilitate a discussion around the questions What is Césaire doing with Shakespeare's text? Why did he make these changes? Record discussion notes on a projector or piece of chart paper to track student understanding.

Clarify that the goal of the upcoming comparative analysis is not simply to identify similarities and differences. Their job will be to engage in the difficult work of thoroughly analyzing the purpose behind changes in the story and the implications of these changes.

Form groups of 3-4 students to share their comparative analysis and build on others' ideas. Provide groups with these Comparative Analysis Questions to promote further analysis of the texts.

Facilitate a whole-class discussion on the target questions What is Césaire doing with Shakespeare's text? Why did he make these changes? All groups should share new insights and students should build on others' ideas during the discussion. Use these additional Full Group Discussion Questions to further the discussion.

Ask students to explain new insights that they gained through the discussion and to formulate a claim in response to the day's questions: What is Césaire doing with Shakespeare's text? Why did he make these changes?

Collect all responses and review in preparation for the last class session.

Session Nine

Ask students to take out all of their responses and notes.

Display and distribute the Summative Assessment analytical writing task:

Compose a comparative analysis of Shakespeare's The Tempest and " A Tempest” by Aimé Césaire. How is Césaire responding to Shakespeare?  Why is he responding to Shakespeare?

Lead a brief brainstorming session in which students explain how they might respond to the writing prompt.

Students independently respond to the extended response writing assignment .

  • Extend writing instruction by adding a peer review component, by asking students to revise informal responses for specific purposes, and by extending the extended response component of the lesson.
  • Students can conduct a close reading of Rudyard Kipling's " White Man's Burden " and formulate meaningful connections between this poem and other texts in the unit.
  • Critique a clip of Disney's Aladdin or Disney's Peter Pan with the specific purpose of analyzing representations of Native Americans or the Middle East. Then, students can form meaningful connections between these films and other texts in the unit.

Student Assessment / Reflections

  • Use the Written Response Rubric to provide formative feedback to all informal responses students write during the lesson, as well as summative feedback to the  Summative Assessment .
  • Lesson Plans
  • Strategy Guides

This strategy guide clarifies the difference between persuasion and argumentation, stressing the connection between close reading of text to gather evidence and formation of a strong argumentative claim about text.

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  1. The Tempest: Creative Writing Lesson

    File previews. pdf, 86.81 KB. doc, 36.5 KB. ppt, 1.9 MB. Handouts and PowerPoint: Explore characterisation using The Tempest by Shakespeare, and creative writing activities. Characters: Caliban and Ariel. Includes handouts with the dialogue of Caliban and Ariel.

  2. EFL Creative Writing: Prospero's Island

    Key Stage 3 (ages 11-14) Key Stage 4 (ages 14-16) B1 / IELTS 4.0-5.0 B2 / IELTS 5.5-6.5. Topic. The Tempest. Resource type. Classroom resource. This creative writing activity lets students cast their own spell to summon up a tempest. Download resource (200.3 KB)

  3. Learning

    INSET Days on The Tempest. "Fantastic workshop with so many useful activities, thank you for a great session that will enhance the children's learning." - Primary Teacher in Nottingham. Book an INSET day with the RSC on teaching The Tempest for Primary, Key Stage 3, GCSE or A-level. Our INSET Days explore techniques used in our rehearsal ...

  4. Creative teaching ideas for THE TEMPEST

    The Tempest is all about duality and duplicity, both in its plot and its form--plays require actors, and you have to be two-faced to act. In fact, acting is where the word hypocrite came from. To soak up this idea of two-facedness on several levels, we made half-Caliban, half-Ariel masks.

  5. PDF THE TEMPEST

    pupils could focus on writing noun phrasesand extended to describe the island. For older pupils, this writing may take several lessons to complete but the time invested in the drama and editing will be reflected in the final piece of writing. This writing could be supplemented with illustrations and map work for inclusion in Prospero's journal

  6. Design your own island creative writing activity

    Design your own island. Designed for students studying The Tempest this resource has a selection of creative writing tasks for students to complete over a six week period. By completing all the tasks students will have designed their own island including creating a tribe of people who live on the island, writing their own folk story and drawing ...

  7. Unit: Shakespearean Comedy

    Creative writing: poetry; Recapping the basics: simple sentences, statements, paragraphs, capital letters and past simple verbs; Complex sentences, avoiding fragments and run-ons, capital letters; Past simple tense, subordinate clauses, punctuating conjunctions and lists; Writing accurate, correctly punctuated and paragraphed dialogue, using ...

  8. The Tempest

    For a comprehensive resource pack, including teaching resources, worksheets, PowerPoints, sequencing tasks and lesson plans, try our The Tempest teaching pack, designed specifically for key stage 3 students with a mix of analytical, creative and drama activities. You can also find a range of resources on Shakespeare's life and context.

  9. "The Tempest" Overview of Themes & 5 Classroom Activities for High

    This is the goal for all of these classroom activities on Shakespeare's plays. The Tempest offers quite a few different opportunities to make these activities meaningful and entertaining. 1. Have students bring five objects that relate to each of the themes listed above. These objects can be pictures, drawings, maps, cutouts from magazines ...

  10. The Tempest

    Resource type: Other. I used this pack to progress through key scenes from The Tempest with a KS3 class, analysing character, language, theme and setting, although it could be adapted for study at a higher level as this was a very able group of students. There's a lot in here - hopefully some of it is useful to you!

  11. Shakespeare's The Tempest

    Introduction. In this lesson, students will watch a video about Shakespeare's The Tempest. There is an introduction activity where students discuss magical powers, they will watch a video and check their understanding of the story, and finally students work in pairs to write a message in a bottle from Miranda, one of the characters from the play.

  12. Shakespeare School

    The Tempest is probably Shakespeare's last solo authored play. It's traditionally placed amongst the so-called Problem Plays, and therefore hard to pin down to a single genre. It tells the story of Prospero, who after being usurped as Duke of Milan by his brother now lives with his daughter Miranda on an isolated island peopled by spirits ...

  13. Lesson Plans for Shakespeare's The Tempest

    Shakespeare's The Tempest for Kids. 1. Introduce The Tempest. Start with a picture book retelling of the story to get not only the plot but also the feel of the semi-supernatural setting. The art in these picture books is lovely and vivid, capturing the mood of the play. 2.

  14. The plot and themes of The Tempest

    The plot and themes of The Tempest. In this lesson, we will start by recapping our knowledge of Shakespearean context, as well as the context of 'The Tempest'. We will then explore some of the key themes of the play before reading a summary of the story and applying these themes to the text. Back.

  15. The Tempest

    The Tempest is one of Shakespeare's most experimental plays. It's set on an isolated island where an old magician called Prospero lives with his lonely daughter Miranda. Get ready to write your own story using characters from Shakespeare's play The Tempest. ... Resources to print - The Tempest (sci-fi) Creative Writing Club - members ...

  16. The Tempest

    File previews. pptx, 103.32 KB. A set of creative writing tasks based around The Tempest by William Shakespeare. Each task is worth 'points' and students must gain a certain amount of 'points' in the lesson.

  17. PDF Year 8 English

    The Tempest - Lesson 1 Mastery Content: • Shakespeare was an actor as well as a playwright • Shakespeare retired from the London theatre in 1611 • 'The Tempest' contains characters from Italy ... As well as writing plays, Shakespeare would also have small acting roles. During Shakespeare's time with the Lord Chamberlain's men,

  18. The Tempest

    Download. Cite. The Tempest - Entire Play. Jump to. Synopsis: A story of shipwreck and magic, The Tempest begins on a ship caught in a violent storm with Alonso, the king of Naples, on board. On a nearby island, the exiled Duke of Milan, Prospero, tells his daughter, Miranda, that he has caused the storm with his magical powers.

  19. Unit

    Free online lessons for students across a variety of UK school curriculum subjects ... 26m video. Lesson . 2. The plot and themes of The Tempest. 35m video. Lesson . 3. The theme of power: Act 1 Scene 1 - A Stormy Start. 22m video. Lesson . 4. The theme of power: Act 1 Scene 2: Prospero and Miranda ... Writing about the play as a whole: How is ...

  20. EFL Snappy Shakespeare Script: The Tempest

    Come and learn from us in person! Our Shakespeare experts deliver educational sessions to people of all ages from around the world. This reduced script tells a story using lines from Shakespeare's The Tempest to get students familiar with the material. Perfect for a 20-minute classroom production of The Tempest.

  21. The Tempest: 4 Creative Writing Prompts, High School ELA

    Here you'll find four creative writing prompts for The Tempest, as well as some themed paper for students to write on. You can either pass the prompt handout out once and let students choose an option and write, or do a series of creative writing exercises, letting them choose a different option each time and photocopying the themed paper again for each.

  22. The Tempest Writing to Describe

    The Tempest. A range of resources focused on The Tempest with homework tasks, contextual information and assessment tasks (both reading and writing) mostly aimed at KS3. Report this resource to let us know if it violates our terms and conditions. Our customer service team will review your report and will be in touch. Last updated.

  23. Reading Shakespeare's The Tempest through a Postcolonial Lens

    Extend writing instruction by adding a peer review component, by asking students to revise informal responses for specific purposes, and by extending the extended response component of the lesson. Students can conduct a close reading of Rudyard Kipling's " White Man's Burden " and formulate meaningful connections between this poem and other ...