The Hobart Shakespeareans
The lesson plan that accompanies this film, The Hobart Shakespeareans, is actually the overview and daily lesson plan used by this 5th grade teacher. In addition to the many unusual elements he incorporates into standard classroom subjects, each year some of his fifth-grade students present a Shakespearean play. The lesson plans and video present his teaching philosophy, and are valuable resources for an Education Academy preparing elementary teachers.
Curriculum Link: http://www.pbs.org/pov/film-files/pov_hobart_guide_action_discussion_file_0.pdf Author: Mel Stuart. A co-presentation with Thirteen/WNET New York
Expected Student Outcomes/Objectives
Students will view an example of one phenomenal teacher and his eager students who together demonstrate the power of high expectations in education.
This resource is useful for discussions of:
• Creating a classroom culture which maximizes student achievement in a safe and nurturing environment
• Quality of public education
• Standardized teaching/testing
• Classification/promotion of students
• Arts education in school
• Extracurricular activities/field trips in schools
• ESL/LEP education
• Providing challenging and/or unconventional content for students
Description of Activities
This is a resource for Education Academies. The discussion guide that accompanies the video includes questions for discussion and quotes from some of the people in the film, useful as thoughtful discussion starters.
Teacher Rafe Esquith has a point of view — a very strong one — about educating children of immigrants. Teaching in Los Angeles at one of the nation's largest inner-city grade schools, Hobart Elementary, Esquith leads his class of fifth graders through an uncompromising curriculum of English, mathematics, geography and literature. He inspires them with cross-country trips to learn history first-hand. And at the end of the semester, every student performs in a full-length Shakespeare play: in this case Hamlet, with advice from actors Ian McKellen and Michael York. Despite language barriers and poverty, these Hobart Shakespeareans move on to attend outstanding colleges, motivated by a teacher honored with a National Medal of Arts.
Instructional Materials Provided
DVD and discussion guide, plus further reading list.
Cost: Discussion guide is free; Price of DVD will vary
Curriculum type: Other
Academic subject areas: English; Career-Technical Education
States' Career Clusters: Education & Training
California Industry sector(s): Education, Child Development, and Family Services
Grade Targets: 11, 12
Level of Expertise for CTE: All
Standards Addressed: Not yet assessed for alignment with new standards
Keywords: teacher, high expectations, teacher education, teacher training