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Of Arms and the Man, I Sing! But first the committees...

This semester has been one long experiment with making the Anglo-Saxon era live.

We have done the following in our project-based learning English IV classroom:

1. Bring in a HEMA instructor for a day of Historical European Martial Arts

2. Learn the basics of single-hand sword stage combat and introduce the long sword

3. Create a script using stage combat skills as the narrative impulse (ie: we started a fight and then justified it)

4. Read "The Wanderer" and pondered loneliness and the human condition

5. Hold a Zoom meeting with a local author (Jordan Poss) who is writing a book based on "The Wanderer"

6. Read "The Battle of Maldon" and reenact the spear fight

7. Take a leadership hike at Paris Mountain with our principal Rick Schwartz and reflect on leadership principles the peers observed

All of this culminated in our upcoming Beowulf performance. (All pics used with permission)

Beowulf in his hand-made armor.

Before going into depth about each aspect of the project, I'll share the breakdown of committees:

English 4 College Prep

1. Actors

2. Props/stagehands

3. Lights and sound

4. Backdrops (Scene 1)

5. Costume design

English 4 Honors

1. Narrator

2. Virtual Reality designers

3. Backdrops (Scene 2)

The next blog post will share the process for designing the script.

What are fun ways you've interacted with older literature? Let me know!

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