Saturday, May 12, 2012

Killed for Sport

This week one of our stories to read for school was a children's adaptation of King Lear. We have done several Shakespeare-derived stories, though mostly comedies up until this point. They loved  A Midsummer Night's Dream and Twelfth Night, but I was still a little nervous about how they would handle a tragedy. (They haven't quite recovered from the story of Roland, more than a year ago.)

No problem. Death and banishment were just as great dramatic fodder as meddling fairies and disguised courtiers. We acted it out with Lego characters as we went along, sending the banished characters skidding across the table and on to the floor. This was such a great hit that we had to do it again. Then we needed a live-action version. Deux served as King Lear, Duchess and I as the two wicked sisters, Dot as Cordelia, and Dash as All The Other Guys.

Everything was winding up to a dramatic conclusion and I poisoned myself after handing poison to the Duchess, then collapsed in dying agonies on the floor. And then my agonies became real, because I landed with my hand on a piece of Lego. It drew blood. We amended the story to have Death By Stabbing.

We read about Antony and Cleopatra in history. This has been a pretty gory week.


Diary of an Autodidact said...

Totally awesome. We haven't done any tragedies yet, but the older kids have enjoyed Midsummer Night's Dream and The Tempest in live performance. And we did name a kid Cordelia...

Wendy said...

Lego's really are lethal! We've had blood drawn a couple of times, too.

Awesome Shakespeare!!

Rachelle said...

We read Colville's Hamlet on your recommendation. Ben is very fond of the tragedies: King Lear, Hamlet, MacBeth. I'm still getting over Roland....sniff! We are hoping to see some good Shakespeare in the Park this summer!