Understanding the Classics Using Today’s Media in MHS English Classes

This is the seventh in a series of blog “snapshots” of how Mercy students benefit from using iPad technology (and other tools) throughout the school day.

In an effort to make Hamlet more accessible to her AP English students, Lynn Waldsmith has them perform a few of their favorite lines from the play and perform them in a 15-second Instagram video once the class is about halfway through the play. Later, in a small group project, students create a short film by performing a scene from Hamlet in a modern setting. Here is a brief excerpt from one of Waldsmith’s favorite video projects.


In Charli Migoski’s  Women in Literature, students used iMessage on their iPads to ‘text’, pretending to be characters from Sense and Sensibility. In the above screenshot, students made inferences for how Marianne and Willoughby would have texted each other at the end of Volume 1. Students could use written text, emojis, and GIFs to display the thoughts and emotions of the characters.

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Students in Hallie Smith’s freshman English 9 class discussed their reactions and connections to Left to Tell, Immaculee Ilibagiza’s memoir of the Rwandan genocide. Students were limited to 1:30 so they needed to compose their messages ahead of time, practicing the same organization skills they do when crafting their literary paragraphs.



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