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Linda F Radke

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Member Since: Feb, 2008

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Category: 

Education/Training

ISBN-10:  1877749036 Type: 
Pages: 

105

Copyright:  1992 ISBN-13:  9781877749032
Non-Fiction

Get Shakespeare

Shakespeare
To Teach or Not to Teach: A Teacher's Manual

Whether you've taught Shakespeare for years or you have absolutely no experience with the Bard, this book is an excellent resource for teaching and directing Shakespeare, as well as approaching methodologies using across-the-curriculum activities.

You, your colleagues and your students will enjoy the guide's clever means of incorporating math, science, art, journalism, music, history, physical education and social issues into the study of Shakespeare.

The text is an outstanding supplement to the Sixty-Minute Shakespeare series, Shakespeare for Children and any other Shakespeare related materials.



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ISBN 978-1-877749-03-2
$ 29.95
Published by Five Star Publications, Inc.
Paperback

Shakespeare
To Teach or Not to Teach: A Teacher's Manual

by Cass Foster and Lynn G. Johnson


Whether you've taught Shakespeare for years or you have absolutely no experience with the Bard, this book is an excellent resource for teaching and directing Shakespeare, as well as approaching methodologies using across-the-curriculum activities.

You, your colleagues and your students will enjoy the guide's clever means of incorporating math, science, art, journalism, music, history, physical education and social issues into the study of Shakespeare.

The text is an outstanding supplement to the Sixty-Minute Shakespeare series, Shakespeare for Children and any other Shakespeare related materials.

Contact Five Star Publications at info.FiveStarPublications.com,
866-471-0777, or visit www.FiveStarPublications.com.
Order directly from 5 Star Publications 24 hours a day using PayPal:





The book is an amazing introduction to the Bard, his works and environment...a way to overcome literacy and dramatic stage fright that can open many doors..."

R. Thad Taylor, President
Shakespeare Society
of America, Inc.
Los Angeles, CA


[Read more Reviews]


 


 


© 1985-2009 Five Star Publications, Inc.
P.O. Box 6698 Chandler, AZ 85246-6698
P: 480-940-8182   Toll-Free 1-866-471-0777

 



 


Professional Reviews

The Sixty-Minute Shakespeare Series by Cass Foster
Sixty-Minute Shakespeare Reviews

Five Star Amazon Review
I finally got it!, March 4, 2009

I received two books called "Sixty-Minute Shakespeare." The first book was "Romeo and Juliet." The second was "Hamlet." I slowly sank into my chair and had flash backs of being in school and trying so hard to understand the many twist, turns and language of Shakespeare.

As I began to read "Romeo and Juliet," much to my surprise I actually understood what was being said. The author added footnotes and did some editing that made it easy to read. Then I read "Hamlet" and again understood what was being said. I began to glimpse the wonder that is hidden within the words.

For the first time in my life I truly understood what Shakespeare had wrote. I loved both plays and was somewhat shocked that I did. I finally realized why he was considered brilliant, and so well known around the world.

I really think these books, which are a part of a six book series, should be read by young people first, before they enter into the world of Shakespeare. The author has done a fantastic job of editing the books to shorter versions, than the original works. Even though the books are smaller, they in no way, take away from the story line of the larger books.

All I can say is thank you Cass Foster. A window that I had closed, is now opened. All because Cass Foster created "Sixty Minute Shakespeare."

Five star rating for both books.
--Sandra Heptinstall, Whispering Winds Book Reviews.


This is an abridged version of Shakespeare's play, Much Ado About Nothing, designed so that you can read through it fairly quickly and so that it can be performed in a shorter period of time than Shakespeare's original version. This is indicated by the series name, Sixty-Minute Shakespeare.

The play begins with several men coming back from a war, and Count Claudio and Lord Benedick find that they are in love with the daughter (Hero) and niece (Beatrice) of governor Leonato. The play unfolds as evil Don John tries to destroy their love.

Cass Foster has done a wonderful job editing the play to be short enough to read it casually, but long enough to keep all the important details. Foster has also made it easy to use the book as a script to guide a director and cast in producing the play.

Features that assist in this include a complete detail of the cast before the play starts, a spot at the end of each act for the actors/director to take notes, definitions of Old English terms, and ideas on how to perfect the play with tips on scenery and pacing.

If you want an overview of a particular Shakespeare play, but don't have the time to read it, or if you are looking for a good script for a class play, I would definitely pick this and the other abridged versions in this series.
--Aaron Garrett, Eclectic Homeschool Online


Twelfth Night is one book that is part of a series titled Sixty-Minute Shakespeare. This series takes some of Shakespeare's most famous works of literature and reduces, condenses and abridges a long, detailed piece of literature into an ideal alternative for the reader who doesn't have the time, resources, or attention span to tackle Shakespeare in its original form.

This carefully edited series works well for individuals or classrooms where the integrity of the work must be kept intact. While the language is condensed, the writing's main ideas are kept the same, as are the beauty of the verse and prose.

I, for one, have never been a fan of Shakespeare, yet this book was readable for me. While I still might not want to pick up more of Shakespeare's works, I at least don't feel so overwhelmed at the idea of picking up one of the huge, massive volumes I've only used as paperweights or doorstoppers before this.

Twelfth Night is part of a series, so if the reader enjoys this version of the story, others are available to keep the magic and love of Shakespeare alive and well.
--Kelly Crespin, Eclectic Homeschool Online


How does one make a play by Shakespeare accessible to those disinclined to read or see one? Or how do you make it possible for those who just don't have the time to do the play full justice, but nevertheless want to have more than just a taste of the bard, to find the time to read it? The answer is the Sixty-Minute Shakespeare series. I've got in my hands their version of Hamlet. There are two important distinctions to this edition. First, it is abridged. The core of the play is left untouched, so the play and its themes are still understandable. Famous soliloquies are also left untouched. The dialogue that fleshes out the minor characters is often abbreviated. Second, the play is rendered in the original language, but uses standard spelling. This is not a modernized version of the play.

The Sixty Minute Shakespeare series was also written to give a shorter, easier to produce version of the play for theater groups that wanted to put on a production of a Shakespearean play. Any of this series would be a great production piece for a homeschool theater group. I recommend Hamlet in particular because there are so many resources available to help young actors learn more about their roles, especially the many fine productions of Hamlet on video or DVD. A short section on staging a production gives useful advice for staging and pacing of a production.

For those who want to use this edition for a study of Hamlet, I suggest getting a study guide to help with understanding the themes of the play. The notes at the bottom of each page help with understanding some of the unfamiliar words used, but those who are not familiar with Shakespeare will benefit from additional explanations of what is happening in the text.
--Beverly Krueger, Eclectic Homeschool Online


Romeo and Juliet is part of the Sixty-Minute Shakespeare series published by Five Star Publications. This series offers a way for many teenagers and adults to read and/or study Shakespeare without having to spend the time required to read an entire play. The author has taken the full works of Shakespeare and edited them into readable and enjoyable condensed versions of the original work. This would be a wonderful choice for introducing Shakespeare.

The paperback book is only 73 pages in length, yet contains all acts of the play through Act V, Scene 3. To make things easier, at the bottom of each page are small footnotes defining words the reader might not know. For example, one page gives these definitions:

Fair and honest = proper
Mark = Target
Tuckle-bed = bed on casters

A quote from the back jacket sums up the true spirit of the book: "While the language is condensed, the integrity of Shakespeare's writings is kept intact so students of the Bard can experience the thrill of the story as well as the beauty of the verse and prose."
--Kelly Crespin, Eclectic Homeschool Online


I facilitate a mother/daughter book group, fifth and sixth graders and their moms. We decided to do a play read this year and, after looking at the offerings under children's theater (boring, trite, tired), we decided to tackle Shakespeare. At first I tried cutting the play down myself, but this is much harder than you'd think! I was delighted when I ran across Cass Foster's series. It's not dumbed down, it uses the original language and has excellent vocabulary helps. Of course the girls didn't get everything that was going on in the play when they read it at home, but when we got together for the reading, it went fantastically well and now they've had a positive introduction to Shakespeare. We will be buying another set of 60 minute Shakespeare books for next year.
--G. Hollinger, Amazon Book Reviewer, Wayland, Michigan


I was never very fond of Shakespeare, with his archaic language and complicated plots that seemed to go on forever. And, while I can still recite parts of Lady MacBeth's soliloquy, compliments of a drama class many (many) years ago, I wouldn't list the great author's works among my favorites to read. Cass Foster has set about to change that with his new series Sixty-Minute Shakespeare. While his versions of the great classics are unchanged in their Old English language and intricate plots, he has successfully shortened the plays to foster accessibility for readers such as myself.

The Sixty-Minute Shakespeare series is written with an eye toward the theater. Whether used for scene work in a drama class or as a fully staged production, each play contains staging tips for scenery and pacing. For the classroom teacher or even the avid learner, the books also include images and themes from Shakespeare's works, related websites, and a liberal sprinkling of footnotes throughout each play to explain and/or define the archaic terminology.

"Much Ado About Nothing," one of several plays in the series, follows Cass' unique format. The plot, while shortened to an hour runtime (if performed) still tells the story of Claudio, Hero and Don John. When Don John tricks Claudio into believing that his love, Hero, has been unfaithful, he leaves her. Hero's father, upon learning the truth, manipulates Claudio into reuniting with his beloved. Woven into this is the compelling love story between Beatrice and Benedick, tricked by friends into loving each other, only to realize that their feelings for one another were there from the start.

The Sixty-Minute Shakespeare series is the perfect compromise for readers wishing to enjoy the brilliance of a true master without spending hours with each play. It is also ideal for the teacher desiring to introduce his/her students to the same experience within the limited time frame of a classroom. On several levels, Sixty-Minute Shakespeare's "Much Ado About Nothing" is a GREAT READ.
--Marcia Berneger, Muse Book Reviewer


Dear Five-Star Publications: Thanks so much for the "Sixty Minute Shakespeare" Series news release.

I discovered the scripts about 5 years ago. As our Education Outreach department at Colorado Shakespeare Festival is dedicated to enlightening teachers and students (and the community at large) about Shakespeare's works-using a "hands-on" philosophy-I have found the Five Star Shakespeare Collection an incredible resource. Whenever teachers are looking for a truncated script, or help with "opening up Shakespeare" to their students, I refer them to you... I have also listed the web page for your series on our website at:
www.coloradoshakes.org/education/resources.cfm#script.

Thanks to you and Cass Foster and Lynn G. Johnson for these terrific tools!
--Melinda J. Scott, Education Director, www.coloradoshakes.org/education


In search of a suitable abridged version of Shakespeare's Midsummer Night's Dream I finally found out about Five Star Publications. The play, adapted by Cass Foster, leaves the Shakespearian language unchanged; and makes students acquainted with Shakespeare and the age that made him. The important point about it was that it really only took about an hour to perform, and so kept the part of each student in acceptable length. We had a lot of fun with Shakespeare, thanks to the helpful ready-made version in the sixty minute edition. Our audience, mainly parents and friends of our school, were not only delighted by the opportunity to enjoy Shakespeare and the students' performance but also to spend an evening without worrying about time. We are looking forward to the Shakespeare play, which will certainly be based on the sixty minute edition.
--Freie Waldorfschule, Ravensburg, Germany


In search of a suitable Shakespeare play for class 10, I finally found my way to Five Star Publications and the Sixty Minute Shakespeare by Cass Foster.

Not only that students could experience - and enjoy - the richness of Shakespeare's language and the age that made him, but also that we were able to perform the play in exactly 60 minutes, was really amazing. Mr Foster's abridged version of the midsummer night's dream or any other Shakespeare play is an ideal means for school performances.
With thanks,
--Elke Keller, Germany


Regarding Much Ado About Nothing
I want to commend you on an excellent product and fabulous service. I taught Much Ado About Nothing in the seventh for three years. The first year, I used the full text. This was not a very successful endeavor. The students couldn't delve very deeply into the play with the limited amount of school time we had. The next two years, I used the 60 Minute Shakespeare text. It was wonderful. I found it to be much more accessible than the full text, and because of this, my students were able to thoroughly study and enjoy the play. I plan to use it this year to teach Much Ado About Nothing to a group of homeschooling students that range from seventh to tenth grade. This is really the only way to teach a full Shakespearean play in the time allowed in a school year. Thank you again for not only producing a great product but for having excellent customer service as well!
--Alyshia Jensen


Here's what the folks at NEA Today had to say about the "Sixty-Minute Shakespeare" series:
This review appeared in their Free or Inexpensive Column

Shakespeare in Brief
"Want to ease kids into reading full-length Shakespeare? The Sixty-Minute Shakespeare series offers fast-paced condensations of six Shakespeare classics. Rather than retell, the series preserves the original play format and the Bard's language, while providing excellent footnotes to archaic words. It's a smart stepping stone to the real thing."
--Nea Today, February 2002
- The National Education Association is nearly 2.6 million men and women working, in schools and colleges across the United States, to help all students achieve.


Here are a few comments about the Sixty-Minute Shakespeare series we received from Education World, an on-line resource designed to help simplify the Internet for educators:
"Reading-or performing-Shakespeare doesn't need to take "forever and a day." Not if you raise the curtain on the Sixty-Minute Shakespeare... Cass Foster has done a superb job of cutting the text while retaining the sense of the story and the poetic rhythm of the words."

Regarding Macbeth
"The play must rely upon the poetry of the language for its imagery, and none of that is lost in this version of Macbeth...The Sixty-Minute Shakespeare: Macbeth... cries out for a stage."

Regarding A Midsummer Night's Dream
"The Sixty-Minute Shakespeare: A Midsummer Night's Dream is as true to the original as an abridged version can be. Cass Foster's version is about language-the language of Shakespeare. And it's sure to encourage students to turn finally to the original, if only to find out what they've been missing!"
--Article by Linda Starr, Education World,Copyright Education World


Regarding Sixty-Minute Shakespeare: Romeo and Juliet and Shakespeare for Children
I have been asked to introduce Shakespeare to a class of middle school children in an alternative school---ANCHOR LITERACY ACADEMY--in the Charlestown section of Boston. This school serves court involved youth who are at risk. That is, they have dropped out of or been dismissed from the Boston public schools. This is going to be a challenge. In looking for resource material, I found your "Shakespeare for Children" and "Sixty-Minute Shakespeare: Romeo and Juliet.". Both are fabulous. Well done. They preserve the language and summarize the story in a balanced fashion. Congratulations. Many thanks.
--Don Stern


Regarding Twelfth Night
"Hello! I just want to thank you for producing your one-hour scripts of Shakespeare! I ordered 40 Twelfth Night, and used them to teach three groups of children. Each group had eight one-hour sessions together, plus what practicing they did at home. This week we put on the three performances for family and friends and they were all a smashing success!!" "We had groups of highschoolers, junior highers, and 4th-6th graders. All the kids memorized their lines and learned their acting parts and pulled it off...We could NEVER have done the whole play. PLUS we had a blast, and I am sure the kids will never forget their time together, all they learned about Shakespeare, and the story of Twelfth Night. Thank you...we are hoping to do another one next fall. Or sooner."

Thanks again, be encouraged.
--Diane Stewart, Waukesha, WI


The editors of these cool little versions recommend that you use them as a stepping-stone to the 'real thing'. The idea is to develop a love for the story and the language and foster a desire to go further and read more of Shakespeare's classic works without intimidation. I think these books meet that goal and then some. They are bright, light and friendly. I believe you and your children will appreciate them as much as I did!
--Heidi Shaw. This Old Schoolhouse Magazine



To Teach or Not to Teach: A Teacher's Manual Reviews

"Highly Recommended Rating"
--Schoolzone the leading independent educational review body


"Recommended for use with fourth-grade and up (though it can be used with younger students…While the authors recommend using this resource in conjunction with Five Star Publications' Sixty Minute Shakespeare series, the suggestions may also be used in any program designed to introduce Shakespeare to students ranging in age from elementary to high school, or a mixture of ages."

"The tone of the book is enthusiastic and encouraging, the suggestions are realistic, and the activities are doable. Shakespeare: To Teach or Not to Teach is an excellent resource for any teacher setting out on the grand adventure of bringing Shakespeare's timeless plays to life." Eclectic Home School Online The book is an amazing introduction to the Bard, his works and environment...a way to overcome literacy and dramatic stage fright that can open many doors..."
--R. Thad Taylor, President, Shakespeare Society of America, Inc., Los Angeles, CA


"Hello! I just want to thank you for producing your one hour scripts of Shakespeare! I ordered 40 TWELFTH NIGHT, and used them to teach three groups of children. Each group had eight one-hour sessions together, plus what practicing they did at home. This week we put on the three performances for family and friends and they were all a smashing success!!"

"We had groups of highschoolers, junior highers, and 4th-6th graders. All the kids memorized their lines and learned their acting parts and pulled it off...We could NEVER have done the whole play. PLUS we had a blast, and I am sure the kids will never forget their time together, all they learned about Shakespeare, and the story of TWELFTH NIGHT. Thank you...we are hoping to do another one next fall. Or sooner."
--Diane Stewart, Waukesha, WI




Shakespeare for Children Reviews

While I tend to avoid abridged versions of the classics, I am happy to report that this is an excellent adaptation of a famous Shakespeare play aimed at elementary-aged children (or younger!) and their parents. Large print for easy reading and pictures of scenes on most of the facing pages help to make this famous work accessible to younger readers. The illustrations are carefully drawn, showing details of period costume, while retaining the charming simplicity of coloring pages.

Although this is an "edited" version, it is by no means "dumbed-down" or modernized. The author has taken pains to preserve the beauty and poetry of the Bard's original language. Simple, but clear, prose descriptions explain the action taking place in each scene and unusual word usage is explained in footnotes.

This book could be used in several ways: the parent reads to the child or the child reads the book, different family members take on parts and act out the play, or small children color the pictures while hearing the story.

Discussion questions at the end of the book are designed to explore the themes in this work that transcend time and place and help make the play relevant to a modern child's life and times.

Altogether this is an excellent introduction to Shakespeare and a spring-board to further study.
--Jean Hall, Eclectic Homeschool Online


"I was a frustrated director until I met the Sixty-Minute Shakespeare. Here was everything I needed: the plot of Romeo and Juliet cut down to a manageable size, production suggestions, blocking notes, set of sound requirements, property lists, detailed stage directions and even the definitions of some of Shakespeare's more obscure words and phrases. I never would have attempted directing a group of homeschoolers, ages 7-14, a Shakespearean production without this marvelous book. And I would have deprived them of an extremely rewarding experience: they worked very hard and the production was highly praised by the community. Not only that, but I am certain that most harbor a distinct affection for the works of Mr. Shakespeare. What more could a homeschool mother and Shakespearian enthusiast desire? Thank you Five Star Publications for providing my children with a never-to-be-forgotten educational memory that was a whole lot of fun!"
--Susan Zelie, Homeschool Educator


I have been asked to introduce Shakespeare to a class of middle school children in an alternative school---ANCHOR LITERACY ACADEMY--in the Charlestown section of Boston. This school serves court involved youth who are at risk. That is, they have dropped out of or been dismissed from the Boston public schools. This is going to be a challenge. In looking for resource material, I found your "Shakespeare for Children" and "Sixty-Minute Shakespeare: Romeo and Juliet". Both are fabulous. Well done. They preserve the language and summarize the story in a balanced fashion. Congratulations. Many thanks.
--Don Stern



Contact Five Star Publications at info@FiveStarPublications.com,
866-471-0777, or visit www.FiveStarPublications.com.







...an amazing introduction to the Bard
The book is an amazing introduction to the Bard, his works and environment...a way to overcome literacy and dramatic stage fright that can open many doors..."

R. Thad Taylor, President
Shakespeare Society
of America, Inc.
Los Angeles, CA



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