Play the Knave is a highly engaging and flexible tool to supplement classroom instruction in Shakespeare.

With hundreds of Shakespeare scenes from nineteen of the most commonly taught plays, Play the Knave is an ideal way to engage students at all levels. Our team and the teachers who work with us have integrated Play the Knave into the study of Shakespeare at elementary, middle, and high schools; colleges; and after-school programs. Whether used as a novel reading tool, an unintimidating introduction to the plays, a scaffold for full-scale performances of scenes, or a capstone performance experience, the game gets students excited about reading Shakespeare’s language.

For an overview of the game as a teaching tool, see Prof. Gina Bloom’s article in Learning, Education, and Games, volume 3: 100 Games to Use in the Classroom & Beyond. An in-progress version is available here.

Northern California teachers: we can bring the game to your classroom at no cost 

Thanks to a generous donation from retired teacher and UC Davis alumna Margaret Bowles, the UC Davis English department runs a program to bring Play the Knave into Northern California K-12 schools.

Learn more: see news media coverage from UC Davis and the English Department.

Our teaching interns will visit your school and bring along everything you need, including hardware, software, and even lesson plans. We would be happy to work with you to customize a lesson plan that best fits your curricular needs and student profile.

Interested teachers from Northern California schools should fill out the form here

Teachers outside of Northern California may still be able to borrow the game and equipment to run it. Contact us to learn more.

Want to learn more about teaching with Play the Knave?

Read our team’s pedagogy report and an assessment of a sample lesson plan implemented to fit California Common Core standards.

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