“All The World’s a Stage…”

Oh snap! William Flankspeare is in the house!

Oh snap! William Flankspeare is in the house!

Obviously, the header is a quote from “As You Like It,” Act II, Scene 6. I may very well be doing a lot of Shakespeare themed headers for the next couple of weeks, for obvious course content reasons.

I never drew Edgar Allan Pony for that unit (months in the past), so I felt that I should introduce William Flankspeare for this one. In two of my classes, we will be doing a full “cold read” production of Julius Caesar for the next week, in a hard final push for intellectualism. It will either go very, very well….or not so much. Those two classes seem pretty excited about it.

The other three sections of class will be dealing with Shakespeare’s shorter work, sonnets and so forth, with an analysis of the literary and poetic devices. This is largely due to the input of my co-teacher, who is in those classes as well. She isn’t too excited about the longer works, in the same way that she pound Poe to be relatively unpleasant. Part of dealing with a co-teacher is in respecting their opinions, and planning with them, so for those periods, the plan is to use Shakespeare’s shorter work. That way, i deliver the literary content that I think students should be exposed to (that is, if we are serious about prepping them for college study), and she gets the pedagogical methodology that she would prefer.

Either way, the plan is ambitious, as there are only nineteen official school days left. That’s a pretty sudden ending.

The big question that I get asked is, “How are you going to finish Caesar in such a short time period?” I always flinch at this question from adults, since it is kind of on the stupid side. It’s a play, that lasts about two to three hours when you actually watch it. Next week, I have five hours of class time. Even going slowly, if we are performing it as a cold read, it should only take the week…maybe a bit more. In fact, the idea that it would take several weeks to do such a read through seems to be like some kind of torture to me…a way of dissecting the text that might actually ruin any of the possible enjoyment of it.

Unfortunately, it’s not easy for me to build a William Flankspeare for class. The Build a Bear Workshop near me closed (it is moving to the Fox Hills Mall), and even if it were open now, they don’t really have Ren Faire looking clothes for the various plush animals. Poor William Flankspeare.

Probably good for my wallet, though. Plus, Zebra Pony seems to want to tough it out until the end of the year, at least. He’s a pretty hard working pony, after all. Very Serious.

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