Guest Blog Series: Mixing It Up With Apps and Shakespeare

Jayne Clare and Anne Rachel are two inspiring, experienced classroom teachers who’ve got their finger on the pulse of apps! We regularly refer to their website,, a credible resource to help educators wade through the vast educational apps out there. We think what they are doing is amazing and are thrilled they’re sharing their expertise with us through a guest blog series! Check out their first BrainPOP Educators guest blog post, where they share how our BrainPOP Featured Movie App inspired them to delve into the world of educational apps.

Every student, at some point, should become familiar with the legendary and dateless writings of Shakespeare. To introduce his work into your classroom, you can watch the William Shakespeare BrainPOP movie. I recommend pausing at the letter to Tim and Moby and asking your students to turn and talk or do a quick write to share what they already know about Shakespeare. You can then assign the associated Activity Pages or explore the FYI section as an added bonus. For a lesson plan idea, check out what BrainPOP Educators has to offer.

Now, you might want to extend the learning just a bit further. This is where the app, Shakespeare In Bits, comes in handy. This app, by Mindconnexs, has a free lite version that you can download and share with your class. The developers of this app realize how challenging this topic can be for students and stress that they have created, “Shakespeare In Bits to help students of diverse learning styles and abilities to discover the richness of Shakespeare.” Gaining a solid grasp on Shakespeare has never been easier! This app lets you read it, watch it, and hear it…all in one place! Material is covered in manageable sections, notes are provided, the synopsis of each play is clear and concise, character maps of who’s who provide a wonderful visual, and there is a dictionary to translate difficult words and phrases throughout the text.

iPads, white boards, and document readers are not necessary for this app, so don’t fret! It can be downloaded and accessed right from your classroom computers.  After you explore this app, you can easily return to BrainPOP and assess what your students’ have learned by having them take the associated William Shakespeare quiz!

Do you know of any helpful apps, resources, or ideas for teaching Shakespeare? Post a comment below.

Jayne Clare and Anne Rachel