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40+ of the Best Free Teaching Resources for GCSE English Set Texts

Just because these literary works are considered classics, doesn't mean the average teen will be excitedly poring over the pages. You're going to need more than mere words to get every student involved, and these resources are ready to help

  • 40+ of the Best Free Teaching Resources for GCSE English Set Texts

Whether you’re delving deep into the delights of Shakespeare, getting political with Orwell or studying the social satire of Austen, grab yourself some of the best free resources around for your GCSE set texts.

1 | Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen



Get your hand fan ready and prepare to swoon as everyone’s favourite rich and brooding bachelor enters your classroom.

These resources take you inside Jane Austen’s house where you can learn about the expectations of men and women when the book was written, and you can discuss how Austen satirises these expectations in the novel, through various characters’ views on love and marriage, and how class is portrayed.

You’ll find these, and lots more, here.


2 | Macbeth by William Shakespeare



Compare soliloquies, print out quote posters, debate the role of fate and more with this teacher toolkit for The Scottish Play.

Plus there are videos of the likes of Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart delivering the famous “Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow monologue for you to compare, and a study guide for the recent film adaptation starring Michael Fassbender.

All of which is here.


3 | Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro



Never Let Me Go, the 2005 novel from The Remains of the Day author Kazuo Ishiguro, has garnered a lot of praise and attention since its release. This dystopian sci-fi tale revolves around a group of schoolchildren in a boarding school, who are cloned and raised for the sole purpose of being organ donors for a small privileged elite.

These various resources include teaching guides, group tasks and discussions, key quotation slideshows, videos and an interview with the author.

Find them all here.


4 | Animal Farm by George Orwell



For many young readers Orwell is a first dalliance into politics and allegory, and it can be a confusing experience, which is why the classroom is the perfect setting for studying Orwell’s masterpieces.

These resources include some great videos that cover the historical context that the book alludes to, and some handy guides as to the real-life characters and events represented by Napoleon, Boxer and Manor Farm.

There’s a look at propaganda and its techniques, and Orwell himself, as well as a study of how he uses propaganda and persuasion throughout the text.

Check it all out here.


5 | Romeo & Juliet by William Shakespeare



Studying Shakespeare’s star-cross’d lovers? Well there’s no need for your lessons to have a tragic ending with these great resources, ideas and activities.

There are conversation starters, a character map to keep up with the Capulets and Montagues, a look at Shakespearean structure, and a study of the play’s intentions through its portrayal of Juliet and how she is introduced to the audience.

Get all this and more here.


6 | A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens



Turn even the most Scrooge-like attitude to Dickens around with these excellent teaching ideas and activities.

You’ll find an absolutely massive study guide which is packed with way too much to even mention, an excellent insight from the British Library about the social consciousness within Dickens’ work and a persuasive writing exercise designed to convince Scrooge about the merits of Christmas.

Everything you could need for this text, bar maybe a cooked goose, is here.

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