A WebQuest for 10th Grade Literature
Borrowed, Edited, and Updated by Ms. De Guire
Think about the last few movies you saw and really liked...Did they have suspense? Intrigue? Deception? Betrayal? Malice? Scandal?...Murder?
William Shakespeare's Julius Caesar contains all of these components...Sound interesting?
Julius Caesar is set in 44 B.C. and was written by William Shakespeare in 1599 A.D. Julius Caesar reigned over the Roman Empire from 67 B.C. to 44 B.C. until he was assassinated. Although it is set in ancient Rome and was written during the Renaissance, the play holds several themes that are still present for us today.
So, what does Julius Caesar have in common with today's world? That's your job--to find out and present similarities between Caesar's world and our own.
A group of concerned citizens in our town does not think we should read Julius Caesar in our sophomore English class. This group believes that Julius Caesar has nothing to do with our lives today and that we should focus on reading more modern works. Your group's job is to convince these people at the next PTA meeting that Julius Caesar contains themes that are relevant to us today.
You should use the resources provided on this webquest as well as your own personal knowledge to complete your task.
By the end of this webquest, your group will have created and presented a Power Point presentation for the PTA meeting (which may look surprisingly like your English class!) to prove that Julius Caesar is just as relevant as modern writings in our lives today. You will present your findings to the class as a group. Additionally, you will turn in an assignment that is specific to the role you choose. You will receive two grades: One for your group's Power Point presentation and one for your individual assignment.
Through this webquest, you will be able to increase your knowledge of Julius Caesar's time to improve your comprehension when we read the play Julius Caesar. You will be working individually at your own pace, choosing what most interests you, and also working in a group to reach consensus on the most dominant themes related to Julius Caesar's time that persist today. You will encounter a variety of writing projects and have an opportunity to increase your literacy with print and speech.
1. First, you will be divided into groups of 4 (or 5). In your group there will be one Reporter, one Architect, one Psychic, and one Doctor. (If you are in a group of 5, you will also have a Shakespeare Expert.) You will decide among your group members who will play each role.
2. Next, everyone in your group MUST read a summary of the tragedy Julius Caesar to help you relate what you will learn during this webquest to the play (Look for themes you can relate to as you read the summary so you'll know what themes you can include in your Power Point presentation!) Use a comparison chart while reading to organize the similarities you notice between Julius Caesar modern-day events.
3. After reading the summary, it's time to get started on your individual task to connect your task to the story of Julius Caesar! The process for each individual role is described on your individual page.
4. IMPORTANT FINAL TASK: Once everyone in your group is finished with his/her particular task, get together to create a presentation for the class (PTA meeting). Take the information you gained during your individual task and decide which aspects will convince the PTA that we encounter the same situations today.
You can use a comparison chart to keep track of similarities that each of you found between Caesar's world and our own while completing your individual tasks (remember--even though this chart can be used for contrasts as well, you should only focus on comparisons at this point because you are trying to show that Julius Caesar can be related to themes today). Your presentation should be in the form of a Power Point presentation in which everyone in your group participates. You should try to include pictures and sounds in your Power Point presentation. Also, try to phrase your slides differently to make them varied and, therefore, more interesting. You could also change backgrounds or colors to keep things exciting! You can try some of these sites for help with your PowerPoint presentation:
You will receive two grades: One grade for your personal assignment specific to your role, and one for your group's Power Point presentation. See your individual role's page for evaluation of your personal assignment. Below is the rubric for the group's Power Point presentation.
After completing this webquest, you should be able to see themes that are timeless; whether you lived in the age of Caesar, the age of Shakespeare, or the age of Oprah, you would have encountered some of the same timeless human experiences. Can you think of any other literary works you have read that demonstrate the continuity of human nature? You might want to check out the following links to find out more about Julius Caesar or William Shakespeare:
Images were downloaded from:
Last updated on October 14, 2009 Based on a template from The WebQuest Page and http://edtech.cebs.wku.edu/~ppetty/baubrey.htm.