Our popular Shakespeare CPD for teachers will equip you with a number of easy-to-use ‘ways into’ Shakespeare that you can take back and start using in the classroom the very next day!

This highly engaging and experiential training day explores ways of using Shakespeare to develop pupils’ understanding of text through speculating, hypothesising and exploring ideas. And teachers who have participated in this programme in the past have told us how easy these are to apply!”

In addition, of course, it will equip you with a range of approaches that can be transferred to any Shakespeare play! You will:

  • Consider some of the new curriculum requirements
  • Explore five different Shakespeare plays (no prior knowledge required)
  • Experiment with ways of divining settings by investigating backstories
  • Investigate “character” – and ways of tracking major characters’ journeys
  • Experience ways of introducing Shakespearean verse and prose to promote plot understanding

Our Shakespeare CPD is delivered in three ways:

1) As a full or half day INSET in your school

2) As a stand alone twilight workshop or as an ‘add on’ to one of our Shakespeare workshops for primary and secondary pupils

3) As a twilight workshop at the Baltic Creative Campus, Liverpool. We usually run a two Shakespeare workshops per year. Find out more here.

Shakespeare CPD Workshop

“A great day that has been very useful – can’t wait to try out the ideas!”

“Before this programme I had no idea how to approach Shakespeare – though I knew I wanted to. Now I have lots of ideas and am stuck for choice as to which play to tackle!”


Although we’ll apply the learning to five of the plays (Macbeth, Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Much Ado About Nothing and The Tempest), you won’t need to know any of them in advance – and we’ll introduce you to ways of adapting the techniques both across Shakespeare’s entire canon and to other curriculum subjects.


“Lots of great ideas that I can apply to my GCSE teaching – and loads of accessible and fun ways of introducing Shakespeare to lower school classes too!” (English Teacher, Fazakerley High)


“I’ve now got a bank of strategies that I can use to engage and interest students – and make Shakespeare more relevant to them!” (KS2 Teacher)


The length of the session determines the exact content but our CPD is made up of the following types of activities:

We’ll guide you through a structure that will let you explore key scenes with students and/or help them explore a play from start to finish:

Warming-Up: We’ll start the day by playing some classic theatre games, all of which can easily be transferred to the classroom.

Creating the Characters: Who are the key players? What do we know about them from the start – and how can we represent this visually? Working with The Tempest, we’ll explore how Shakespeare first presents his characters to the audience.

Setting the Scene: What happened before Act I Scene I – and how can this help our understanding? Working with The Tempest once again, we’ll guide you through a whole-group activity that places the backstory at the forefront of the action.

Loving the Language: Shakespeare’s language can be intimidating – so we’ll share with you some ways to take the sting out of the soliloquies and defuse the dialogue! Exploring Romeo and Juliet, we’ll play with the text, starting with individual words, but building to entire blocks.

Unwritten Scenes: Why does Shakespeare sometimes choose to tell us about key pieces of action rather than show us? We’ll answer this by looking at Macbeth – and explore ways of supporting students’ own scriptwriting skills.

21st Century Bard: How can we help students connect Shakespeare’s situations with their own – and those of their families and friends? We’ll take an experiential look at one of the pivotal points of A Midsummer Night’s Dream – one that every young person can relate to!

As the Wheel Turns: Why do relationships between Shakespearean characters shift so much? Looking at Much Ado About Nothing, we’ll explore some dynamic changes – and how they help bring the threads of the plays together.

“I’ve discovered really child-friendly ways of drawing children into the text – really fun! I can relate these ideas across English – and some of them right across the curriculum!” (KS2 Teacher)


“Loved it! Inspirational – gave me so many ideas, from start to finish!” (English Teacher, Stockport Grammar)


Our Shakespeare CPD is delivered by Jackson Kavanagh and Jo Stokes. Jackson has directed a number of Shakespeare plays in a variety of spaces and, as a former Associate Lecturer with the University of Liverpool, has presented day schools on the histories, tragedies and comedies. Working with the Royal Shakespeare Company, Jo has performed in Richard III, The Tempest and The Merchant of Venice – in theatres from Stratford to Tokyo! More recently, and with as creatives, Jackson and Jo have supported teachers and pupils in both primary and secondary schools (and trainee teachers at Liverpool John Moores University) in bringing Shakespeare to life – and in learning to love the language!

Booking details:

For more information about this programme or any of the others developed by as creatives, please email Jenny Liggins at j.liggins@as-creatives.com or call our office on 0151 708 8886.

Programmes for Primary and Secondary School Students:

We are also deliver a wide range of Shakespeare programmes for primary and secondary school students including our popular Speeded up and Shaking up Shakespeare workshops. 



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