Free Resources for Romeo & Juliet

Updated: Jul 27

I have always been very lucky to work with smart and caring coworkers. On this blog, I only share materials that I created individually, so I don't have a ton of my own materials to share for Romeo & Juliet. This is because when I taught Romeo & Juliet, my best lessons came from my coworkers and the book Shakespeare Set Free. If you are teaching Romeo & Juliet for the first time, drop everything and go buy this book. Someone who had taught in my classroom before me had left it on the bookshelf, and I opened it in a planning panic. Besides my coworkers (both of whom had theater experience), this book was the most helpful in helping me enact active and fun lessons during my Romeo & Juliet unit.



SO, what this all means is that I cannot share my whole Romeo & Juliet unit, but below are some activities that I created that may be helpful to you.



Pre-Reading Activities for Romeo & Juliet

  • Action Ranking-Rank actions based on how serious of an offense they are

  • Agree/Disagree Discussion (You can also turn this into a more active activity by having kids move to one side of the room or other other based on whether they "agree" or "disagree" with the statement)

  • Character Cut-Outs (paid product): Introduce the plot of Romeo & Juliet and the main characters by having students complete this "Character Cut-Out Activity." Basically, students cut representations of each character out of old magazines to help them start learning the characters. The TpT product has a PowerPoint and graphic organizers to walk you through the activity.



Romeo & Juliet Reader's Theater


One of the main pieces of feedback from my coworkers was to have the kids act out Romeo & Juliet using Reader's Theater. I was not comfortable with this at all at first since I have no theater background, but eventually, even I figured it out. Also, there are a million variations on Reader's Theater (ie: changing the scene and language, etc.), but I have stuck with the basics.


The handouts below are from a few years of trial & error. One page is directions for the kids on how to do Reader's Theater and the other pages are charts that show how I divided up Romeo & Juliet and assigned the scenes to kids. Overall, when we started an act, I would give the kids an overview of the act and then assign them a scene. Sometimes, some scenes were very long and some scenes were very short, so I would divide up the scenes as needed to try and give each group and equal amount of work. Then, students had to get into their groups and create the script for their scene, and lastly, they would have to present their assigned scene to the class. There is a rubric that you can use as a starting point for grading. You may want to add more detail to it, depending on your grading preferences. The charts below still have my student names on them so that you can see how I assigned kids; you just need to delete my kids and add yours and then you'll be good to go.




Romeo & Juliet Scene Summary Charts

After each group presented their scene, I would give the rest of the class time to summarize the scene on a graphic organizer. The kids who presented the scene had to field any questions from their classmates about plot points that their classmates were confused about. I always warned the presenters that if their classmates had no clue what happened in their scene, then they did not do a good job bringing the scene to life in their presentation. The q & a was also a good time for me to gauge who in the presentation group did all the work, as the kid who stepped up to answer the questions was typically the only one who understood what was going on, overall.



Romeo & Juliet Handouts & Activities





Other Books That Connect to Romeo & Juliet

There are so many great books that you can use in place of Romeo & Juliet OR as an extension of your Romeo & Juliet studies. Below are some of my current favorites.






​I stayed up all night reading this book. It is my absolute current favorite Romeo & Juliet spinoff. Natasha's family is about to be deported to Jamaica, and on the day she is supposed to be deported. she meets Daniel and has a whirlwind day.

​In this story, Romiette, who is black, and Julio, who is hispanic, fall in love despite the prejudices of their families and the gang danger at their school.

​Another book I stayed up all night reading. Two teen cancer patients meet at a support group and develop a relationship from there.


Romeo & Juliet Movies

Again....there are so many. Here are just a few.







​Baz Luhrmann's stylized remake is still my favorite.

​More traditional. Appropriate for school.

​An imaginative take on Shakespeare's writing process.


There's almost an endless amount of resources out there for Romeo and Juliet, but hopefully these are still helpful for someone. If you have any resources that you would like to share with others, please post them in the comments below.



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