Yesterday's class began with a personal myth share -- the homework assignment from last week. Because we have so much to cover, and only 90 minutes to fit it all in, we heard from half the class yesterday and will have the other half read their myths on Monday. For those that still need time to complete their stories...reprieve!
Susan then led the class in a series of very fun and helpful diction and inflection exercises. Students were given a "Tongue Twister" handout and another on Greek name pronunciations. It would be great if students could review these at home, as well.
Our first read through of The Golden Fleece: Part II took most of the remaining class time. Lengthier, and more action-packed than Part I, I think the students were generally surprised at the ending and enjoyed getting into the story line.
We briefly discussed some of the elements of the myth and quickly realized that we need more time to be able to dig deeply into some of the concepts that arise out of these ancient stories. We will be spending two more weeks on Part I and Part II -- re-reading the scripts and spending lots of time on analysis, discussion, and the un-folding of our next homework assignment.
"Ladies and Gentlemen of the Jury..."
On that note, for next week, students were tasked with the following:
Imagine Medea is put on trial for the murder of her two children, the Princess Glauce, and King Creon. Write a case for the prosecution or defense. We divided the class in half -- five will write a defense argument and five will write a case for the prosecution of Medea. Students should keep in mind this a creative writing exercise and it is perfectly acceptable to fabricate witnesses and evidence to support their cases. They should, however, refer to the script for basic details, as well as the handout provided to help guide them in constructing their arguments.
On Monday, at least two students will "face off" -- one defense vs. one prosecution, in our own version of a mock trial! If we do not have time for everyone on Monday, rest assured, all will be asked to present a case before we conclude our study of Jason on March 4.
On March 11, we will move on to The Odyssey.
Lastly, Susan would like to add the following thoughts...first, is the growth and courage the kids brought with them to class this week. They were expressive and brought out their characters more. And they held a space when their classmates stepped out of their comfort zones. Please make sure students highlight their Act II parts and look back over both scripts and read the "acting note" prior to their line, (e.g., sarcastically or angrily or dryly), so they can deliver the line with that inflection. All around there was a real creative flow happening and it's wonderful to be a part of it!
At the end of class, Susan also instructed the children in stage direction and some physical exercises to help them feel comfortable in their own skin. Great job everyone!
See you next week!