Advanced Shakespeare, For First Graders

Another continuing installment of Life with Geeklets… Mommy:  “I have to go meet Liv and Tommy to pick out wedding invitations!” Geeklet:  “What kind of meet, Mommy?  How do you spell it?” Mommy:  “M-E-E-T.” Daddy:  “What other kinds of meet do you know, Geeklet?” Geeklet:  “Ham?” Daddy: “Very good, and how do you spell that one?” Geeklet: “Ham?” Daddy: “No, how do you spell the meat that is.” Geeklet:  “I don’t know, I was guessing.” Daddy:  “Fair enough.  There’s lots of different ways to spell it, and different meanings.  Shakespeare uses it too.  Hamlet uses that one when he says, “I shall think meet to put an antic disposition on.” Geeklet:  “Which story is he in?” Daddy: “Hamlet?  He has his own story.  That’s a grown up one, lots of people die in that one.” Geeklet:  “They do?” Daddy:  “You see, Hamlet’s father had died, and he was very sad about it.  But he was visited by a ghost who told Hamlet that his father had been murdered!” Geeklet:  “What’s murdered?” Daddy: (thinking that if Mommy finds out we just went down this path I am in a world of trouble)  “That’s when a bad guy sends somebody to Heaven on purpose.  Back in the old days, a long time ago – nobody does this anymore – if you wanted to be king, there was only one way to do it…get rid of the old king.  But only bad guys would do that, that’s why they’re bad guys.” Geeklet:  “Did Hamlet know the ghost?” Daddy: “He sure did – it was the ghost of his father coming back from Heaven to tell Hamlet what had happened!’ Geeklet:  “It was?  It was really his dad?” Daddy:  (loving it when the 6yr old stumbles onto the heavy duty questions) “You know, it’s actually a good question.  Nobody was really sure about ghosts, whether they were good ghosts or bad ghosts.  So it might have been Hamlet’s father, coming back from Heaven…but it might have been a bad ghost just pretending to be Hamlet’s father, to mess up his brains.  We don’t really know, and neither did Hamlet.”   At this point the children are summoned to kiss Mommy goodbye before she leaves, and then it’s off to watch Blues Clues.

2 thoughts on “Advanced Shakespeare, For First Graders

  1. That’s a good one, Duane. From “meet” to Hamlet’s father’s ghost. Impressive leap. I can imagine the look on your wife’s face!

  2. To be perfectly honest I originally told her it was “mete”, and only on looking it up did I realize that’s not how Shakespeare spelled it.

    If my wife heard me explaining what murder means to our 1st grade daughter I think you’d next see *me* as a ghost telling my son to avenge my own most foul and unnatural murder!

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