PS/IS 686 | Brooklyn, NY

Grade 8 Humanities: Week of 10/9/2017 “Where Civil Blood Makes Civil Hands Unclean”




Dear Families,

This week was devoted to sonnet writing and civil war. We familiarized ourselves with the sonnet’s form (14 lines, abab rhyme pattern) and then wrote our own sonnets using some of the themes (Love, Family, War, Friendship) in Romeo and Juliet.

It is unsurprising that the thematic connections between Shakespeare’s text and the American Civil War abound. It serves to remind us that discord unfortunately has a firm foothold in the continuity of human existence.

Now that we’ve acclimated to the Shakespearean language by reading Act I, we will be creatively imagining that we have been invited to Lord Capulet’s feast. We will be designing and making masks based on characters from Romeo and Juliet next week. In addition to an associated character from the play, each mask will be required to have a title, a detailed description of the mask and the event where it was worn, and finally, a quote from another character about the mask. Approaching characterization in this way will allow us to really get to know these people! We won’t need to wonder why Romeo is so moody! We’ll understand the reasons behind Juliet’s attachment to the Nurse. We will know that when we feel like Tybalt, we need to behave more like Benvolio! And Mercutio? We may have to read on to figure him out!


Ms. Sacilotto



Screenshot 2017-10-04 at 8.03.16 PM


“Rebellious subjects, enemies to peace,
Profaners of this neighbour-stained steel,–
Will they not hear? What, ho! you men, you beasts,
That quench the fire of your pernicious rage
With purple fountains issuing from your veins,
On pain of torture, from those bloody hands
Throw your mistemper’d weapons to the ground,
And hear the sentence of your moved prince.
Three civil brawls, bred of an airy word,
By thee, old Capulet, and Montague,
Have thrice disturb’d the quiet of our streets,
And made Verona’s ancient citizens
Cast by their grave beseeming ornaments,
To wield old partisans, in hands as old,
Canker’d with peace, to part your canker’d hate:
If ever you disturb our streets again,
Your lives shall pay the forfeit of the peace.
For this time, all the rest depart away:
You Capulet; shall go along with me:
And, Montague, come you this afternoon,
To know our further pleasure in this case,
To old Free-town, our common judgment-place.
Once more, on pain of death, all men depart.”

–Prince Escalus, Act I, i