Universally regarded as one of the premier contributors to world literature and culture, Shakespeare was a prolific and versatile playwright, poet, actor, and entrepreneur. Over the course of 20 years, Shakespeare wrote an astounding 38 plays and 150 sonnets, most of which are literary masterpieces. Shakespeare’s canon is vast and his influence unparalleled. Classical educators want to do Shakespeare justice in our homes and classrooms, but how? In this Atrium course, teacher and podcaster Heidi White provides an engaging classical experience with Shakespeare’s rich and varied body of work. Over the course of nine months, class participants will read and discuss three representative plays and nine influential sonnets, cultivating both a broad understanding and a concentrated insight into Shakespeare’s poetry and plays. Throughout the course, Heidi provides guidance and modeling of classical pedagogy, providing a practical and accessible roadmap for teaching Shakespeare with confidence and excellence.
This class is for:
●Homeschoolers and classroom teachers developing skills for Shakespeare classically.
●Classical education professionals and/or enthusiasts who are increasing their familiarity with Shakespeare.
●Thoughtful readers who are interested in reading and discussing Shakespeare in a community of enthusiastic learners.
This course provides an immersive classical learning experience with Shakespeare’s poetry and plays, including:
1.Direct instruction on literary, historical, and performance elements of Shakespearean poetry and plays.
2.Interactive Socratic discussion on nine sonnets and three representative plays - one comedy, one tragedy, and one history,
3.Guidance/modeling of classical pedagogy for teaching Shakespeare at home and in the classroom.
In each class, we will read and discuss an important Shakespearean sonnet. Additionally, the course is divided into three units of six classes each. Over the course of each unit, class participants learn historical, literary, and performance characteristics of Shakespearean comedy, tragedy, and history as they read, watch, study, and discuss one representative play from each genre. The instructor intentionally models and teaches classical pedagogy through Socratic discussion, mimetic teaching, and direct instruction.
Fall Block - Sept, Oct, Nov - Comedy - Much Ado About Nothing
Winter Block - Dec, Jan, Feb - History - Richard II
Spring Block - March, April, May - Tragedy - Macbeth
Required class materials:
(1) Norton or Riverside Shakespeare OR Folgers Much Ado, Richard II, Macbeth, Complete Sonnets
(2) Notebook and writing utensil
(3) Internet Access
Suggested Participation: Read one play every three months, Watch at least one performance of each assigned play, Attend class live or access class recordings
About the Instructor:
Heidi White, M.A., is a teacher, editor, podcaster, and author. She teaches Humanities at St. Hild School in Colorado Springs and is the author of the forthcoming The Divided Soul: Reuniting Duty and Desire in Literature and Life. She is a contributing author, speaker, consultant, and Atrium instructor at the Circe Institute and a weekly contributor on fiction, poetry, and Shakespeare on the Close Reads Podcast Network. She serves on the Board of Directors of The Anselm Society and the Academic Advisory Board for the Classical Learning Test. She writes fiction, poetry, and essays, and she speaks about literature, education, and the Christian imagination. She lives in Black Forest, Colorado with her husband and children.