Project Exchange

Driving Question  What's this?

What role does power/status have in determining whose story becomes the "truth?"

Shakespeare's "The Tempest" is a play that gets deep into questions of power and perspective. This unit on colonialism and "The Tempest" was a collaborative effort among the Academic Literacy, Humanities and Performing Arts classes. As an essentially colonial play, "The Tempest" was read in parallel with a study of colonialism in the Congo. In the performing Arts section of the unit, we read the play, did various comprehension activities along the way, and then in groups, students chose a scene from the Tempest, translated it into their own language and created a video of their scene. Through this project, students explored issues of power and perspective: How do different events in the play look different from the perspectives of various characters? How do the status of various characters effect whether their verion of events gets accepted as the "truth?" How does the power analysis of this fictional play relate to the real events of colonial congo and the real events of students' current lives? We explored these questions through the medium of video.


Subject Area(s): Visual and Performing Arts


Teaching Days to Complete: 4 weeks


Keywords  What's this?

Shakespeare, video, tempest, colonialism, status, perspective, acting, movie


Outcomes  What's this?

Students will be able to read and understand Shakespearian language.
Students will be able to write an interior monologue from the perspective of one character.
Students will be able to analyze the power dynamics in a scene.
Students will be able to translate a Shakesperian scene into their own language.
Students will be able to memorize lines.
Students will be able to portray a character effectively, staying in character for an entire scene.
Students will be able to plan and produce a video.


21st Century Leadership Skills  What's this?

Manage Projects Effectively, Express Creatively, Collaborate Productively


Graduation Portfolio Tasks  What's this?

Creative Expression, Multimedia Project



Shakespeare Behind Bars
This is a documentary film depicting a production of "The Tempest" in a prison....


Chaosfilms trailer for "The Tempest"
This edgy, urban, video version of the play piqued the students' interest at the beginning of the unit....


Tempest script
There are many published versions of the Tempest. Make sure to get one with good footnotes. The version we used ws a c...


Act 1, Scene 1: The Shipwreck

Video (5.1 M)


Act IV, Scene 1

Video (2.1 M)


An Adaptation of the Love Story

Video (6.7 M)


Chaosfilms trailer for "The Tempest"
Anna Shneiderman

"The Tempest" Video Project
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