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Shakespeare: Memoria Press; Lightening Lit. or Progeny Pr.?

shakespeare memoria press lightening literature progeny press

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#1 historymatters


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Posted 05 November 2016 - 07:22 PM

I am wondering if I could get some feedback on the LL Shakespeare guides versus the newer MP guides versus the few PP guides. I am thinking I'll probably use the TG only, since it's basically a family course around here. It will give me what I need to guide them  (hold my hand, in a way), as well as start/engage in discussion and facilitate understanding for all of us.


 I am curious to know from any that have used any of these what you thought of the extra background content available (most interested in cultural and political contexts), as well as other insightful attributes.


Not so interested in writing activities.


We will be using audio dramatizations to further enjoy the texts and go to a local Tavern to watch performances.



#2 Lori D.

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Posted 05 November 2016 - 09:14 PM

Actually, we went with "none of the above". (lol)


The main things we used:

Parallel Shakespeare materials (for Macbeth) -- teacher guide, and the student workbook

Brightest Heaven of Invention: Christian guide to Six Shakespeare Plays (for several other plays)


The Parallel Shakespeare teacher guide had great background info and some analysis for guiding students through the play; the student workbook had loads of great discussion questions.


Brightest Heaven is was actually written as a "beginner adult" guide, but works very well with high schoolers; loads of deep analysis and background for guiding students through the work, plus discussion questions.



We did not use PP guides for any Shakespeare plays, but did use some of the high school level guides for other works of literature -- I find them to be "hit and miss". Some are definitely better than others, some are not at all worth it. A big portion of all of the high school PP guides had to do with looking up Bible passages and comparing themes or choices in the novel with Scripture. We are Christians and do like to do that -- but not JUST that, so I personally recommend adding a second guide from a different perspective to get a broader view of the work, any time when using a PP guide. Just my opinion. :)

Edited by Lori D., 06 November 2016 - 09:45 PM.

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#3 SilverMoon


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Posted 05 November 2016 - 10:38 PM

Our favorite guides for discussion starters are by Cambridge, which has a full version of the text in it. You can find cheap used versions on Amazon or from Half Price Books. Then the kid has a No Fear or Barrons version with full text juxtaposed with a modern English version.

You might look online for free study guides too, and just take the parts that interest you. There are approximately a bajillion.
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#4 purplelily


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Posted 06 November 2016 - 08:55 PM

Another resource is the Oxford School Series:




It goes over the play, with commentary and has vocabulary defined in the margins.

#5 historymatters


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Posted 14 November 2016 - 08:26 AM

Thanks everyone.


I have Brightest Heaven...; am reading it currently.


Sounds like a toss-up between Oxford and Parallel. I would like this fairly laid out before me. I suppose the only option is to one from each to see which I prefer. Thankfully, they're inexpensive.


I agree concerning the PP guides and looking up verses. I don't really like to deconstruct and and then overlay with Bible verses-it seems forced sometimes; not every time, but many times. I think that Universal/Divine Truth is fairly obvious to my children, since they've been raised on Biblical concepts, so it doesn't need to be forced. 


Anyone have How to Teach Your Children Shakespeare? I don't have it, but was considering it.


Did you still get texts like Folger's Books since you had the material in your worktext?



Edited by historymatters, 14 November 2016 - 09:14 AM.

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