Saturday, October 03, 2009

Making Connections

I had THE best conversation about Macbeth yesterday (Friday) after school with a student who stopped by to retake a quiz. She still wasn't remotely ready - was convinced that one of the lines referenced in the quiz was said by the Thane of Cawdor (you know, the one whose execution is mentioned at the beginning of the play?) so I told her to study over the weekend & come see me before school on Monday.

It is now 11:11. I'm wishing for the same thing I always do (but of course, I can't say what it is, because that would ruin EVERYTHING).


I don't even know what brought it on; we just went through and read the parts together. Macbeth is a play I love for its lines - and we're not even to the really juicy stuff, like the sleepwalking scene, or when Macduff finds out about his kids.

Is Macbeth really reluctant? is he wrestling with guilt or methodically plotting, making contingency plans? Does his wife convince him to commit the murder, or is he letting her "lead" him, so that she's as thoroughly involved as he is? Do you think she really could have killed her own child? or Duncan? ... she didn't, after all, and Macbeth DID...

We were there for nearly an hour and a half, reading the funnest parts and talking about different possible interpretations and what that would mean for the story. (My poor Hunk napped in the car outside!) As we were packing up, she said, "Wow, Ms. Keys, now I'm actually excited to find out what's gonna happen next!"

Just before she left, she made me PROMISE that I would let her re-re-take the quiz Monday morning. hahaha... she is as much of a grade-grubber as any of 'em. Wants to be an honor graduate because it looks good, and it'll help her get into a Good College. (Can't let an older sib outperform her!)

It amused me, yet bummed me out a little, because here we had a BLAST exploring the story... but when it comes down to it, the grade is what matters.

I guess it's hard to overcome years of indoctrination - and, let's face it, human nature in that we LIKE to look good in comparison to others! - in one afternoon. But I hope that as she continues her studies she won't forget what it was like just to be immersed in a brilliant story.

And I hope that somehow I can create that kind of experience for the rest of my students. Few - if any - of them would be willing (if able) to give that kind of time. And as challenging as it was, it's a lot easier one-on-one than with a classful.

But it'd be nice...

Tangent: I cry every single time I watch this video. We're going back over fall break and I CAN'T WAIT!!!

Image thanks to


wapwallopen said...

Some people have jobs in classrooms. True teachers touch lives. Imagination is a wonderful tool in making it all happen.

Rachel said...

Gotta love those moments! Live for 'em, in fact. It's nice to have those shining moments of affirmation to hang on to :)

Clix said...

It IS nice! I like the thought that I've made someone's life a little better. ^.^

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