Teacher's Toolkit: Using Discovering Literature in the classroom

Written by the English and Media Centre with the Learning team at the British Library, this free pack shows you how to make the most of the wealth of materials on the Discovering Literature website. It’s full of practical tips to refresh your teaching. The pack includes:

  • A guide to finding what you need on Discovering Literature
  • Ideas for using primary sources to explore genre and context
  • Innovative ways of using collection items – from manuscript notebooks to first editions, illustrations, reviews and production stills
  • Ideas for helping students to engage with articles by critics
  • Critical debating games
  • Creative projects
  • Ways of using digital resources to promote independent research.

What is Discovering Literature?

Discovering Literature is a free online learning resource, using British Library treasures to bring literature to life. The site is brimming with inspiration for English teachers and students, from GCSE to A level, EPQ and Cambridge Pre-U. Alongside digitised manuscripts and vivid contextual sources, there are illustrated articles, short videos and teaching resources on a huge range of literary texts from Beowulf to The Bloody Chamber, from Macbeth to An Inspector Calls. Put the links on your school portal, share them with your students or embed them in your Schemes of Work.

The site covers over a thousand years of English literature, divided into five modules: 

Shakespeare and Renaissance Writers
Restoration and 18th Century
Romantics and Victorians
20th Century