Past Professional Development

VIDEO: Teaching Othello - Master Class 

2016
Folger Education led a Master Class on Teaching Othello in 2016. With the support of our partners at Alabama Public Television, the hour-long session featured a middle school teacher, a high school teacher, and a Shakespeare scholar, all led by Peggy O'Brien. If you are considering teaching Othello, we urge you to watch this first. Presenters: 

  • Ayanna Thompson, scholar, George Washington University
  • Donna Denize, teacher, St. Albans School, Washington, DC
  • David Fulco, teacher, The Laboratory School of Finance and Technology, Bronx, NY
  • Peggy O’Brien, host, Folger Shakespeare Library
Shakespeare and English Learners (online workshop for Teacher Members)
August 13, 2019

Shakespeare has something to say to everyone, and everyone has something to say back to Shakespeare. What are the essential principles and practices for helping all English Learners bring their own gifts to the learning and make meaning from complex texts?

VIDEO: Directing Shakespeare: An Interview with Rosa Joshi (archived online for Teacher Members)
August 21, 2019

Dr. Peggy O’Brien interviews Rosa Joshi, the visionary director behind the new Folger Theatre production of Henry IV, Part 1. Join us for a glimpse into Joshi’s process and perspective as a director, producer, and educator committed to producing classical plays with diverse casts. Joshi describes herself as “a text-based director with a conceptual and abstract visual sensibility. I'm particularly drawn to dense, poetic texts that embrace the transformational and symbolic power of theatre. Shakespeare is my great passion—I'm always looking for what is relevant, fresh and immediate in the classical canon for a contemporary audience: as a director who loves classical work, I'm obsessive about asking: why this play, why now?”

Summer Academies: Teaching Othello and Teaching Hamlet 

July 2019, Washington, DC

A week-long deep dive into teaching a specific play--and Shakespeare's language--the Folger way! 

Beyond Shakespeare: Teaching ALL Texts—and Reaching ALL Learners—Using the Folger Method (TEACHER MEMBERS EXCLUSIVE-ONLINE)
March 27, 7:00 - 8:00 PM (EDT)
ONLINE

ALL kinds of students connect with not only Shakespeare but ALL complex texts, since ALL students are deserving and capable of understanding rich language and great stories. Learn and practice this revolutionary methodology that makes literature fans of all kinds. 

VIDEO: Shakespeare Sonnets in the Classroom (TEACHER MEMBERS EXCLUSIVE- ONLINE)
February 28, 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm (EST)
ONLINE

Longtime friends and colleagues Peggy and Donna will discuss the importance of teaching sonnets, different ways to use sonnets, how plays are like sonnets, how you can use sonnets to pair with a text (ex. Othello), and so much more. Donna has been sharing her expertise with Folger teachers for years and it’s invaluable when teaching Shakespeare and beyond. Become a Teacher Member and gain access to this and future professional development opportunities!

TSI: Weekend Intensive
February 22-23, 2019
Folger Shakespeare Library

Come along and join our Teaching Shakespeare Institute staff and great guest faculty in a deep dive into the Folger’s way of teaching Shakespeare—an interactive, student-centered approach that incorporates attention to scholarship, performance, and what happens in your classroom. An...that is effective for students of all ability levels.

American Moor: Teaching Shakespeare and Race or, Teaching Race Everyplace

RESCHEDULED: February 3rd, 2019
Anacostia Playhouse

Join us for a special DC event for teachers in collaboration with Anacostia Playhouse, Washington, DC. In 85 minutes, playwright/performer Keith Hamilton Cobb uses his love of language and 30 years of experience in the American theatre to explore Shakespeare, race, and America, not necessarily in that order.  His play, American Moor, considers the dilemma of a seasoned African-American actor auditioning for a role fraught with racial animus, Othello. American Moor is an unapologetic investigation of an irony that stands as metaphor for America’s most pressing societal condition: a white culture dictating rules of conduct to a non-white one from an often inadvertent place of privilege. No matter what or who you teach, we think that American Moor is a play that every English teacher should be able to see and reflect upon. Join Keith Hamilton Cobb, Folger Education, and the Anacostia Playhouse, and let’s all do that together.

VIDEO: What to Do—and What Not to Do—In Week One of a Successful Shakespeare Unit 
January 17, 2019
Online

Learn the best way to start a Shakespeare unit—by focusing relentlessly on the words, words, words, and engaging EVERY student. Experience firsthand the essential strategies for building student comprehension, response, confidence, and excitement. Work with language from a mix of commonly taught plays. 

Teaching Shakespeare Institute
June 24 - July 20, 2018
Folger Shakespeare Library

Folger staff, Teaching Shakespeare 2018 faculty, and 24 colleagues from across the country gathered for a month of intense and joyful study of the intellectual, pedagogical, and theatrical challenges of 1 Henry VIMacbeth, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The emphasis will be on the making of history: who features in it, who keeps a record of it, and what happens when two forces in a story conflict or two world views collide. We also explored and created successful strategies for teaching those plays, including how to engage students in rich classroom discussions on the sometimes difficult topics of cultural, gender, racial, and religious differences. 

Teaching Romeo and Juliet 
July 16-27, 2018
Online - Forsooth!

In creating this summer course, we have mined the most relevant assets of the Folger Shakespeare Library and curated learning experiences which will do two big things: (1) feed your own appetite for learning and (2) feed your classroom and the minds of your students. Many of these resources come out of the scholarship that happens at the Folger and are therefore meant to stimulate, and even challenge, your thinking about this play and Shakespeare’s language. Others focus on performance, how actors and directors deal with this play and how you can get your students to do the same. And finally, others focus on classroom practice, how you teach this play using some of the most essential Folger strategies for student learning.

Teaching Romeo and Juliet
October 14-November 4, 2018
Online - Forsooth!

In creating this fall course, we have mined the most relevant assets of the Folger Shakespeare Library and curated learning experiences which will do two big things: (1) feed your own appetite for learning and (2) feed your classroom and the minds of your students. Many of these resources come out of the scholarship that happens at the Folger and are therefore meant to stimulate, and even challenge, your thinking about this play and Shakespeare’s language. Others focus on performance, how actors and directors deal with this play and how you can get your students to do the same. And finally, others focus on classroom practice, how you teach this play using some of the most essential Folger strategies for student learning.

Othello Summer Academy
July 7–12, 2019
Folger Shakespeare Library 

Be one of 30 teachers in each Academy to spend a week at the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC, and take a deep dive into Othello. Learn how to get ALL your students understanding and befriending Shakespeare’s language, Work in the world’s largest Shakespeare collection and learn alongside scholars, theater professionals, experienced teachers, and your fellow participants. Gain skills, confidence, and a whole new community of support as you learn how to teach literature the (totally exciting, engaging, and rigorous) Folger way. 

5 Powerful Resources to Use in Your First Weeks Back at School—and All Year Long!
July 15, 2019
Online - Forsooth!

What are the most inspiring and useful things your students can do at the start of the year? Whether or not you begin with Shakespeare, these Forsooth! resources will help create an inclusive classroom and set ALL your students on an exciting and rigorous path of inquiry, adventure, and discovery.


Explore the online PD Library here!