Tuesday, August 18, 2015

syllabus dilemma

Let's say you usually take five days of class to teach a play, but you discover that after you've blocked off the first six weeks of class for Dr. Faustus + The Comedy of Errors + a really complicated (but hopefully worthwhile) role-playing game,* you have exactly twenty-four days left. On tap for those twenty-four days, for sure, are Much Ado, 1 and 2 Henry IV, and As You Like It, in that order. What do you do with the extra four days?

A) Insert The Merry Wives of Windsor after 2 Henry IV -- it pairs well with the H4 plays, and it's not so deep that you really need five days to teach it.

B) Cut a day from 2H4, and insert Richard II before 1H4.

C) Take a day to lecture about the stuff that happens in Richard II and show students a few key scenes and passages, but don't assign the whole play. Use the other three days to teach A LOT A LOT A LOT of sonnets.

D) Teach one of the narrative poems, which are just the right length for sliding into that space. (N.B., I've never taught V&A and barely remember it from grad school. I have taught Lucrece, and like it, but I'm not sure it works all that well with this lineup of texts -- I'd normally teach it in a sequence with Titus and Julius Caesar. OTOH, the whole obsession-with-chastity thing might pair interestingly with MAAN.)

E) What, are you STUPID? Show a MOVIE.

* Yep, I'm trying Reacting To The Past. Nope, I've never done anything remotely like this before. I may blog about it. Or I may go and hide in a corner and lick my wounds, depending on how it goes.