Imaginarium Facilitator's Guide

This information will be essential for anyone wishing to organise and run their own Shakespeare Imaginarium. (You can also download the Facilitator's Guide.)

The Shakespeare Imaginarium is a collaborative space for educators to refresh their thinking and inspire each other about Shakespeare and pedagogy. The role of the facilitator is to organise each workshop and guide participants through the focus points and questions. The facilitator is a collaborative participant along with the others, but also provides clarity and stability, and encourages a productive progression through each workshop. The facilitator should maintain a balance between allowing participants the freedom to explore new ideas and ensuring key points are covered in each workshop.

Preparing for the Imaginarium

  • In order to run a Shakespeare Imaginarium, aim for at least 5 participants, preferably from different institutions. You may like to send out invitations.
  • Organise a weekly meeting time and place for each workshop and ensure all participants can attend. Workshops are cumulative so it’s important that all are attended. We recommend one two-hour workshop per week for four weeks. A short break after the first hour can be helpful.
  • Send out worksheets and materials to participants in advance, and ask that everyone familiarise themselves with the content.
  • The worksheets are designed so that participants don’t need to read the full articles if they cannot access them or if they simply don’t have time during the week. Some articles are ‘subscriber access only’, so you will need library access (university, state or national) to access them. Ideally, at the very least, the facilitator will have read the full article for each week.
  • As facilitator, it is essential that you are familiar with the Five Principles of Imaginaria.

The first workshop

  • At the first workshop, begin by briefly discussing the Five Principles with the group.
  • Give participants a chance to share their reasons for taking part and what they are hoping to get out of the Imaginarium.

Running each workshop

  • Before each workshop, ensure each participant has a copy of the play and the Workshop Information Pack.
  • At the beginning of each workshop, review the aims for that workshop and then proceed through the focus points.
  • Don’t feel bound to cover every question for each focus point. Allow participants to select questions and issues that are of interest.
  • Where appropriate, spend some time making connections with the other topics, ideas, and plays.
  • In the final workshop, distribute the Participant Feedback Sheet. Designate some time for everyone to complete it (anonymously) before the workshop ends. We’d love to hear your feedback too, so please let us know.

Shakespeare texts

All workshop packs use the third edition of the Arden Shakespeare series. Other modern editions are equally suitable, but line numbers may vary.

  • Hamlet. Arden Shakespeare. edited by Ann Thompson and Neil Taylor. London: Cengage Learning, 2006.
  • King Richard III, Arden Shakespeare. edited by James R. Siemon.  London: Cengage Learning, 2009.
  • The Tempest. Arden Shakespeare. edited by Virginia Mason Vaughan and Alden T. Vaughan.  London: Cengage Learning, 1999.
  • Julius Caesar. Arden Shakespeare. edited by David Daniell.  London: Cengage Learning, 1998.

Download this Facilitator's Guide here.