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Guest Post by Hannah Rials
Did you know this last April marked Shakespeare’s 450th birthday?
Every year on April 23, Stratford-upon-Avon and the world celebrate the birth of the most famous English playwright in history — and this year’s festivities will be bigger than usual, as 2014 marks what would have been the 450th birthday of William Shakespeare.
So we thought it would be fitting to review this wonderful Shakespeare-inspired book. Enjoy
Shakespeare’s Storybook is a compilation of Shakespeare’s timeless tales retold with a bit of a twist: The Taming of the Shrew, Romeo and Juliet, The Merchant of Venice, As You Like It, Hamlet, King Lear, and The Winter’s Tale. Patrick Ryan artfully condenses and simplifies Shakespeare’s complicated, lovable stories for young children to adore just as they will later in life. Some names are slightly changed and some bits of the story might be altered, but the stories are still as lovely as ever. With this storybook, you will be able to share your favorite tales of this timeless playwright with your children, who will soon adore them as much as you do. I mean who doesn’t love a fateful romance and a demon blowing up? The illustrations are beautiful, along with the history that precedes each story.
This will be your child’s go-to bedtime story, sure to send them to sleep with dreams of “Romeus” and “Tibbot.”
Something To Do
1. This website tells the history of Shakespeare and provides tons of coloring pages and activities for your child:
2. Perform the stories just like The King’s Men did in Elizabethan times. Using the wonderful book Great Characters from Shakespeare Paper Dolls from Tom Tierney, parents can make a curtain with sheets and assign your child’s favorite character for them to play. Get your kid’s friends involved and have them perform it for parents!
3. Making paper puppets of your favorite characters! MasterPuppetThreatre has some great options.
4. After each story, write down what you learned from the characters and their story. Make it a family affair!
Born in the hills of Louisiana and raised in the mountains of Tennessee, Hannah Rials is a seventeen year old aspiring author and editor. She’s been writing short stories since she was a little girl, but for the past several years, she has been writing, editing, and reediting a novel of her own that she hopes to publish in the near future.