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Stop, Look and Listen: The Images Behind Shakespeare's Words (Day 3 of 3)

Teachers' Rating:
  1 rating

Carl Van Vechten. Paul Robeson as Othello. Photograph, 1944.

January 2013

Deborah Gascon teaches English at Dutch Fork High School, Irmo, SC

Darren McGarvey teaches English at Ketytering Fairmont High School, Dayton, OH

Sarah Lanterman teaches English at Woodinville High School, Kirkland, WA



Plays/Scenes Covered

Othello, 3.3.299-318

However this lesson can be used with any play

What's On for Today and Why

Students will:

  • Review Day 1 and Day 2 
  • Gather ideas based on analyzing images and text
  • Form a living picture inspired by images and text
  • Process feedback and rework living picture as necessary

This lesson is third of three. Each lesson will take one 50 minute class period.

What You Need


Living Picture Brainstorm

Living Picture Feedback


Folger editions of text



What is also helpful:

Shakespeare Set Free (A Midsummer Night's Dream edition) p.48-50 for instructions on organizing Living Pictures.

Living Picture Brainstorm
Living Picture Feedback
What To Do



Teacher preparation:

1. Read Shakespeare Set Free (A Midsummer Night's Dream edition) p.48-50 for instructions on organizing Living Pictures.


2. Post large signs at the front of the classroom reading "Visual Analysis" and "Textual Analysis"


In class:


1. Review the skills in visual and textual analysis as learned in Day 1.


2. Divide students into groups of 3 or 4 and distribute copies of the Living Picture Brainstrom Sheet.


3. Using the Silent Graffiti displays from Day 1 and their annotated monologues from Day 2, have students pick a line that they will represent through a living picture. Try to ensure that as many lines are covered as possible.


4. Have students work through the handout recording the important images and emotions associated with the text. Encourage them to find visual representations for each word.


5. Have students draw a rough sketch on their handout of how their living picture may look.


6. Allow students time to work on their living picture. Encourage them to go with their instincts rather than analyzing each idea in detail.

Note-each student must participate.


7. Distribute copies of the Living Picture Feedback Handout.


8. Have each group "perform" their living picture and have others walk around the staged group, recording their reactions on the Feedback sheet.


9. After each group has performed have a class discussion of their observations and reactions.


10. Allow groups time to process the feedback and rework their living picture as necessary.


11. Allow each group to perform their living picture a second time.



Follow up suggestion: Use more images from the play and/or paused scenes from a DVD and display them on an interactive white board. Discuss the images that are visible and those that are not.


How Did It Go?
  • Were the students applying the ideas discussed in Day 1 and Day 2?
  • Did students use analysis tools in their discussion groups?
  • Were students able to guess the lines used in Living Pictures?



Have students discuss how tools to analyze visual text can be applied when reading a newspaper, magazine or TV show.


If you used this lesson, we would like to hear how it went and about any adaptations you made to suit the needs of YOUR students.

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3 CommentsOldest | Newest

I genuinely enjoyed reading it,you are a great author festa monica
Sheila October 13, 2014 7:12 PM

laminate wood flooring
Traci October 6, 2014 10:28 AM

more hereWe need more talents in the drama. I have seen many high school plays in life. I have to say they all seemed to real armatures. They say that it is the baby steps into the Hollywood kingdom. Thanks for sharing this.
star September 25, 2014 8:26 AM
  Common Core State Standards




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