It is that time of year again for a blind date with Shakespeare! In class we discuss Twelfth Night and its adaptions, and on their own my students are working on analyzing their own set of adaptions.
This year I wrapped the books and only put the plays they were adapted from on the spines. The students chose based solely on this information. After break I am going to let them know the extent of their project, but the nitty gritty is that they are going to read a detailed summary of the play and write on paper on how they feel the novel did adapting the story for a modern audience.
Here is the list of novels I use:
Fool – Christopher Moore (King Lear)
Wondrous Strange – Lesley Livingston (A Midsummer Night’s dream)
Something Rotten – Alan Gratz (Hamlet)
Something Wicked – Alan Gratz (Macbeth)
Confessions of a Triple Shot Betty – Gehrman (MuchAdo About Nothing)
The Third Witch – Rebecca Reisert (Macbeth)
Ophelia – Lisa Klien (Hamlet)
Lady Macbeth – Susan Fraser King (Macbeth)
Gertrude and Claudius – John Updike (Hamlet)
The Story of Edgar Sawtelle – David Wroblewski (Hamlet)
Saving Juliet – Suzanne Selfors (Romeo and Juliet)
A Thousand Acres – Jane Smiley (King Lear)
Falling for Hamlet – Michelle ray (Hamlet)
Exposure – Mal Peet (Othello)
Enter three Witches – Caroline Cooley (Macbeth)
Can anyone think of other Shakespeare adaptions out there that are appropriate for the high school crowd?
I like this a lot, but I know I would get in trouble for giving “Fool” to anyone younger than a senior—and even that’s risky. I had some students find it on their own and read it after we studied “King Lear” in my Shakespeare class, and even they were like “oh myyy … teehee!” at the bawdy parts. Now, *I* don’t care about the content and I’m well aware the same language and bawdiness is buried in Shakespeare, but parents and administrators don’t get it.