Sturgis CS- English Classroom Activity

II. High School Level Expectations for College Readiness– Ela
B. High School Classroom Work
II.B8) Oral Commentary
Sturgis Charter School
Junior and Senior English
Oral Commentary
The Oral Commentary and Individual Oral Presentation assignments distinguish the IB
curriculum assessment from other formal public school assessments. All junior and senior
English students must in one sitting read a previously unidentified passage from a
familiar text, plan an oral response to several questions, and then respond to those
questions for 15 minutes with the teacher.
Oral Commentary
Example text and Questions:
Enter Hamlet
Now might I do it (pat,) no he is a praying,
And now I’ll do’t.
[He draws his sword]
And so he goes to heaven,
And so am I (revenged.) That would be scanned:
A villain kills my father, and for that,
I, his sole son, do this same villain send
To heaven.
Why, this is (hire) and (salary,) not revenge.
He took my father grossly, full of bread,
With all his crimes broad blown, as flush as may;
An how his audit stand who knows save heaven.
But in our circumstance and course of though
‘Tis heavy with him. And am I then revenged
To Take him in the purging of his soul,
When he is fit and seasoned for his passage?
Up sword, and know thou a more horrid hent.
[He sheaths his sword.]
When he is drunk asleep, or in his rage,
Or in th’ incestuous pleasure of his bed,
At game a-swearing, or about some act
That has no relish of salcation in ‘t—
Then trip him, that his hells may kick at heaven,
And that his sould may be damned and black
As hell, whereto it goes. My mother stays.
This physic but prolongs thy sickly days.
[Hamlet] exits.
KING, [rising]
My words fly up, my thoughts remain below;
Words without thoughts never to heaven go.
He Exits.
1. What words and images do you find most significant in this passage and why?
2. What does this passage reveal about Hamlet’s thoughts and how does he compare
here with in other moments in the play?
ELA Frameworks:
Guiding Principles: 1,2,3,7
ELA Standards:
3.17: Deliver formal presentations for particular audiences using clear enunciation and appropriate organization, gestures, tone, and
8.33: Analyze patterns of imagery or symbolism and connect them to themes and/or tone and mood.
15.7: Evaluate how an author’s choice of words advances the theme or purpose of a work.
For related information, see:
Section IIA. High School Syllabi and Course Outlines II.A4) International Baccalaureate Syllabus Grade 12
& Section IIB. High School Classroom Work II.B9) Mock IB Exam
& Section IIC. High School Writing II.C2) Academic Writing- Assignment and Student Work