About Me

After 23 years as a high school social studies teacher, I have taken a leap into library media.
This blog chronicles my experiences making this transition and my learning in that process.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

The Tempest, Character Boxes, and Students in the Garage

The Shakespeare class has returned to the Garage to begin assembling their character boxes as the final assessment for their study of The Tempest. The students were given three options which I wrote about in a previous post. All of them chose the independent box project. Here are the guiding questions and criteria:

What kind of box or container best fits this character? (could be a steamer trunk, magical cabinet, barrel, burlap sack, coffin, etc.) Why? And how will you show this?

Does this box ground this character to a place or allow (force?) this character to move? Why? And how will you show this?
What does this character:
    • Hope?
    • Fear?
    • Believe?
    • Desire?
    • Wonder?
    • Deny?
    • Aspire?
    • Want?
    • Plan?
As a result of the attributes above, what would s/he put in the box? Find or make those things to add to your box, at least one item per attribute. Justify each selection with an excerpt from the play.

As a result of the attributes above, what else would be in the box whether or not s/he wants it there? Add it to the box and justify it with an excerpt from the play.

Design the outside of the box to resemble how the world sees the character; design the inside of the box to represent how the character understands him/herself.

Some students found the container or box they want to use and are letting the form of the box dictate how their other choices evolve. Other students are building their box out of a particular material because of what the material will say about their chosen character. Still others are beginning with the form or shape they want their box to be and then coating, layering, and transforming the shapes of the inside and outside of the form to become the appropriate container for their character.

Similarly some students are starting with the outside of the box and working their way to the inside and then to the contents. Other students are starting with the contents and developing a box that will be able to contain them.

Here is how one student described her thought process:


This kinesthetic, multimedia project has gotten their creative juices flowing and the students are requesting lots of materials. Some (but not all) of the materials or items I can bring to them from my garage at home. I sent an email to the faculty and staff which said:

WHS Learning Community,

The Garage (formerly the LLC makerspace) is in need of some materials for student projects that are currently underway. If you happen to have, and are about to discard:
    • crates from clementines or other produce,
    • drawstring (or other style) sacks of any material,
    • perler beads, or
    • fake flora: flowers, leaves, etc.
students are requesting these materials for a project they are doing.

We will gratefully accept donations of any materials you are looking to dispose that can be up-cycled, recycled, and re-purposed in student projects. Scraps of fabric, old baskets and crates, random hardware, etc. If you aren't sure if we can use it, shoot me a quick email -- the answer will probably be YES!

Thank you!

Many people have responded offering all sorts of materials from the items on the list to all sorts of other materials. We will soon be flush with new resources! And many people are offering to deliver their donations which will increase traffic through the space and hopefully result in more teachers bringing their classes to work in the Garage!

Later this week, the class will return to the LLC and present their boxes to each other. When the teacher asked if they would rather conduct presentations in the classroom or in the library, they unanimously chose the library!

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