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VOYAToo often students have a negative first encounter with Shakespeare because their reading is focused on getting through the text rather than enjoying the story. This book helps students and teachers overcome this hurdle. Adaptations, such as the thirteen found here, modernize Shakespeare's language and encourage active participation, allowing students to grasp complicated story lines more clearly, understand relationships between characters, and pay better attention to overall topics and themes. Prefacing the more difficult reading with an adapted reading could make a difference for some students between appreciation or rejection of the great Bard. These adaptations are strong enough to stand on their own for younger or older student groups. Many stories could be used as early as the sixth grade, and all of them are appropriate for high school groups. The fact that the text is formatted for reader's theatre makes for scripts that can be easily acted out. Suggestions for props, delivery, and actual presentation make the text a complete package for teachers struggling with time constraints. Additional aids are the summaries that preface every play and the list of cast characters that point early to the relationships they have to each other. Overall, this excellent resource book is for any literature teacher from middle to high school. Whether paired with the original text, used as a means of preparing students for later, more difficult encounters with Shakespeare, or standing in for the original text with more reluctant or challenged readers, these adaptations assure that no student is left behind in understanding the contributions and importance of Shakespeare. 2003, Teacher Ideas Press,233p.; Index. Biblio., $30 pb. Ages 17 to Adult.
—Elaine J. O'Quinn