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The Tempest Lesson Plan
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Teachers and professors: Let this lesson plan help you guide your students through The Tempest by William Shakespeare. In addition to providing thorough character analyses, this lesson plan offers assistance in navigating the major themes of the play, especially the role of illusion. Examples of guided discussion and study questions from this lesson plan include the following:
- In The Tempest, why is the boatswain so rude to his passengers? The ship is in a storm. The master and boatswain (and crew) are doing everything they can to keep the ship from going down. The royal passengers keep popping out from below and bothering the boatswain. Thus, instead of just not helping, they are actually causing additional problems. The boatswain just wants them to stay where they belong and to let him work.
- How did Prospero and Miranda come to live on the island? Prospero's brother Antonio and Alonso, King of Naples, conspired and overthrew Prospero. Prospero and his daughter Miranda were cast out. Gonzalo, the nobleman assigned to set them off, felt sorry for them and packed their boat with provisions. Some time later their boat was cast upon the shore of the island.
- Why does Caliban take up with Stephano and Trinculo? He meets them in the woods and mistakes the drunken Stephano for a god. Thinking Stephano will be able to defeat Prospero, and being disenchanted with Prospero, he decides to side with Stephano.
- What is Alonso's reaction to Ariel's reminders? Sebastian's? Antonio's? Alonso feels bad, thinking that his son (Ferdinand) was killed as Heaven's way of making punishing him for his evil deeds. Sebastian and Alonso are ready to fight the "Fiends" who bring this message.
- What tricks do Prospero and Ariel play on Caliban, Stephano, and Trinculo? First Ariel leads them through briars and thorns and leaves them in a dirty pond. Then Prospero has Ariel put out "glistening" clothes for them (as bait). Finally, Prospero has spirits in the form of dogs chase the three away.
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eNotes is pleased to offer Teacher's Pet Publication LitPlans, the most complete literature lesson plans available to teachers and educators everywhere. Since 1989, these lesson plans have undergone extensive development based on the experience and feedback of teachers all over the world. We have more than 115 lesson plans available for download on the most widely-read books and plays, including this lesson plan for William Shakespeare's The Tempest.