literature

Twelfth Night Act 2 Sc 4

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In this video from Penn State's School of Theatre production of Twelfth Night, back at his palace, Orsino summons Feste to perform a song. In the meantime, the Duke and Viola have a conversation about a certain someone Viola (Cesario) fancies, and Orsino offers his love advice. Orsino declares he will not take “no” for an answer from Olivia, but Viola protests that love doesn’t always go according to plan. The two debate men’s and women’s capacities for love, and at the end of their exchange, Orsino orders Viola (Cesario) to return to Olivia with a love token from him.

Rumpelstiltskin for Parents: Guided Viewing | Understanding Fairy Tales Old and New

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The Miller's Daughter and star of the show sits down and takes you behind the scenes of the learning concepts embedded in this modern retelling of the fairy tale Rumpelstiltskin. This video is designed for parents to watch without their children to learn valuable co-viewing tips and tricks such as discussion questions, pausing points, and questions to ask children during and after the fairy tale video.

Designed to meet Grade 4 English Language Arts Standards: Reading Literature: Describe in depth a character, setting, or event in a story or drama, drawing on specific details in the text (e.g., a character's thoughts, words, or actions).

The Journey of the Jewish Americans

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In the 19th century, most Americans had little or no contact with Jewish people.  Jews who immigrated to the United States were met with a mixed attitude of suspicion stemming from prejudice, stereotypes and awe as people associated with Biblical stories and events. For the most part, the early 19th century Jewish immigrants were regarded as outsiders who were both tolerated and sometimes despised. Many began as peddlers, the traditional occupation of Jews in Europe. In this segment from The Jewish Americans, learn how their arrival was well timed to supply Americans with the goods and supplies they would need as the United States expanded west.

Shakespeare’s Language | Great Performances: Julius Caesar

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Reading Shakespeare can be challenging and may seem daunting for many students. Use these videos from Great Performances: Julius Caesar to see how professional actors approach Shakespeare’s language and gain confidence performing his works. Discussion questions, teaching tips, and activities allow students to practice different strategies for better understanding Shakespeare’s plays. 

Check out additional resources by visiting the Great Performances: Julius Caesar collection page and the Great Performances and Donmar Warehouse websites.

The Apology | Lesson Plan Clips

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In this lesson students will learn the history of an often-overlooked part of World War II—the girls and women forced into military sexual slavery under the occupation of the Japanese army. In The Apology, three of the surviving women, nicknamed “the Grandmas,” Adela Barroquillo from the Philippines, Cao Hei Mao from China, and Gil Won-Ok from South Korea, relate their experiences as young girls during the war and reflect on the scars this violence left on their entire lives.

Doctor Atomic | The Metropolitan Opera

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On July 16, 1945, an atomic bomb was tested for the first time in the deserts of New Mexico; within a few short weeks, the entire world would have to confront what this monstrous invention meant for humanity. Yet in Doctor Atomic, composer John Adams takes the audience back to the days immediately before the bomb’s first test to explore a more intimate side of this momentous event. The opera’s music is an excellent example of Adams’s signature “minimalist” style, while the libretto spotlights the complex feelings and conflicted loyalties of the Manhattan Project physicists—a small group of people tasked with developing the most destructive weapon the world had ever seen.

Watch John Adams’s opera Doctor Atomic, get a behind-the-scenes glimpse of the Met’s production, and use the accompanying Educator Guide to explore a defining moment of the twentieth century through the work of one of America’s greatest living composers.

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland | The Great American Read

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The Queen of Hearts is the most notorious villain in Lewis Carroll's Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. She is in charge, but her unchecked power makes her act like a child. In fact, there is humor in her villainy, and she even has a catchphrase. Experts and Seattle musician Debbie Miller explain why the Queen is such an effective and memorable bad guy.

Learning Objective

Students will:

  • Consider the role a villain plays in the plot of a story
  • Explore the concept of power and characters that abuse their power
  • View a video segment and answer contextual questions
  • Write a short essay that argues for or against a statement about power
  • Build vocabulary, reading, and listening comprehension skills 

 

Politics and Power | Great Performances: Julius Caesar

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Engage students with a deep analysis of politics and power using two videos from Great Performances: Julius Caesar. Even though the play was written hundreds of years ago about ancient Rome, why do the themes of the play continue to resonate? Support materials provide students with opportunities to think critically about the depiction of Caesar in the Donmar production and to explore contemporary connections through discussion questions, teaching tips, and classroom activities.

Check out additional classroom resources by visiting the Great Performances: Julius Caesar collection page and the Great Performances and Donmar Warehouse websites.

Madama Butterfly | The Metropolitan Opera

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One of the most beloved operas ever written, Madama Butterfly is the story of Cio-Cio-San, a young Japanese geisha who gives up everything to marry the American lieutenant Benjamin Franklin Pinkerton. Yet when Pinkerton must leave Cio-Cio-San to return to America, the young lovers’ conflicting conceptions of fidelity and commitment become all too clear, and Cio-Cio-San finds herself facing an impossible choice. In the Met’s production, acclaimed film director Anthony Minghella draws on both Western and Japanese theatrical traditions to bring Cio-Cio-San’s story to life, while Puccini’s expansive music gives Cio-Cio-San’s vulnerability and courage a voice.

Watch Puccini’s Madama Butterfly, get a behind-the-scenes glimpse of the Met’s production, and use the accompanying Educator Guide to explore artistic representations of Japan around the turn of the twentieth century.

One Hundred Years of Solitude | The Great American Read

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Nobel Prize-winning author Gabriel García Márquez uses "magical realism" in his story of the fictional town of Macondo and the five generations of the Buendia family who inhabit it. The story is told in flashbacks and flash-forwards that fuse the fantastical with the everyday. The town and the Buendias survive wars, forbidden love affairs, and the invasion of foreigners and industrialization.

Learning objectives

Students will:

  • Watch a video segment and answer contextual questions
  • Expand vocabulary and reading comprehension skills by using the vocabulary list associated with this segment
  • Understand what magical realism is and how it differs from fantasy
  • Research and identify Latin American countries and the setting of Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s novel, 100 Years of Solitude

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