Preparing the class
The teacher introduces the Bard Blitz by outlining the aims of the exercise, explaining its four stages and emphasising the importance of close reading and original argument building to literary studies. Students should be told the one-line aim of each stage of the Bard Blitz (see below and on the Student Worksheet) to help them orient themselves to the task.
The teacher divides the class into groups of about six students. Students remain in groups throughout the exercise, and within those groups will work both in pairs and individually. Each student will need a copy of the Student Worksheet and the relevant Hamlet extract.
Each group works on a single extract (in a class of four groups, two groups might deal with one extract and the other two with another so that the teacher doesn’t have too many extracts to juggle).
At each stage of the Bard Blitz students have the guidance and involvement of the teacher who circulates between the small groups.