SWBAT…make it through Friday without being eaten by English teacher.
Today was a fun Friday – thank goodness. This crazy week deserved it. My afternoon classes watched the Julius Caesar movie in place of acting (too crazy for a pep rally Friday) and we paused periodically to examine what we were seeing. It wasn’t until 7th period I figured out how to put on subtitles – that would’ve made life easier about two months ago. Anyway, I assigned my kids the role of marriage counselor, because we were watching the end of Act II Scene 1 and the beginning of scene 2. At the end of the first scene, Brutus’ wife Portia (no, dear tenth graders, NOT the car) begs her husband to tell her what is going on, and who the men were who visited them in the dead of night. In Scene 2, Caesar’s wife Calpurnia tried and failed to convince Caesar to stay home March 15 after having a horrific dream in which Caesar is murdered. The kids’ job was to compare the two relationships, using dialogue, physical proximity, and camera angles as evidence.
Their favorite part of the class was when I said “whore” two or three times. Brutus and Portia have a very strong, respectful, loving marriage; it is obvious by the way she stands up to him and the way he responds to her pleas. When he says he does not wish to share what is bothering him, she reasons that because of his marriage vows, his respect for her intelligence, and her role as his wife and other half, she should know what is going on. I love her speech:
“Within the bond of marriage, tell me, Brutus,
Is it excepted I should know no secrets
That appertain to you? Am I yourself
But, as it were, in sort or limitation,
To keep with you at meals, comfort your bed,
And talk to you sometimes? Dwell I but in the suburbs
Of your good pleasure? If it be no more,
Portia is Brutus’ harlot, not his wife.”