William Shakespeare, King Lear
Lesson plans and other teaching resources

For introductory, background and other resources, try Shakespeare and the Elizabethan Age. For links to other plays, try the Shakespeare Main Page.

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King Lear Teaching Unit
Includes chapter-by-chapter study guides, discussion questions, vocabulary, assessments and keys, and key quotations.

Classical Theatre of Harlem Study Guide: King Lear
Plot summary, background information, themes, imagery, discussion questions, and lots of photographs. This 13-page document requires Adobe Reader or compatible application for access.

A Close Look at King Lear on Film
This filmography is accompanied by a bibliography. This is an excellent resource for those wondering which DVD to order.

Great Speeches by William Shakespeare
This lesson focuses on Lear's speech from Act 2, Scene 4.

Enjoying King Lear
Extensive background, plot summary, and commentary. Scroll down for ideas for essay topics, thematic development, and related links.

King Lear
Plot summary, themes and imagery, essay topics.

King Lear
Printable anticipation guide. Adobe Reader required for access.

King Lear
A list of fine art related to the play. Follow the links for a picture of the painting and some commentary.

No Fear Shakespeare: King Lear
On the left, Shakespeare's words. On the right, a contemporary English paraphrase. Divided by scene.

Questions of Kingship in King Lear
An interdisciplinary, research-based approach to understanding King Lear in its cultural context. Written by a teacher, posted at the Folger Library site.

"Speak What We Feel, Not What We Ought to Say"
Students work with the text in small groups to understand a character.

Teacher's Guide to King Lear
Overview, elements of tragedy, writing prompts, and more. Requires Adobe Reader or compatible application for access.

Teaching Language in King Lear
This strategy will appeal to visual learners especially.

Vocabulary from King Lear:

Words are presented in context and with definitions. Click on a word for pronunciation, examples of recent use, synonyms, more.

"Who is it that can tell me who I am?": Performances of Lear's Speeches
Students use speeches from early in the play and late in the play to examine character development and theme.

A Thousand Acres by Jane Smiley
Eighteen discussion questions for this novel, King Lear set in rural America.

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