In 3rd year Classical Civilisation, I’m just about to start teaching Roman history in a topic I’ve called ‘Settlement, Kingdom, Republic, Empire’, and starting with The Aeneid in an abridged version – after all, they’re only 13ish.
Last week, in a moment of planning inspiration/madness, I decided to write a summary of the story of the Aeneid that could be rapped along with the theme tune to
The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.
. (Reason: Aeneid based on oral poetry of Homer, equivalent of oral poetry today is rap, The Fresh Prince is a rap everybody knows, except my friend Matt, but only because he was brought up on a small island near Mauritius.)
Then I forgot about it.
Today, I suddenly realised I was actually going to have to do it, or it would be a rubbish effort. So, I did it.
Amazingly, it wasn’t awful, and in fact, after hearing at least one pupil ask the person next to them “Is this actually happening?”, in the end they gave me a standing ovation. Bless. Then I got them to do it, before getting them to write down the main points of the story in their own words, which they did… in about a minute, in silence. Result.
Later this evening I posted a brief comment on Facebook about it, and then posted a clipped image of the slide with the lyrics on. This was about 7.30pm. At about 9.30pm, a Classics teacher friend who’d seen the original post texted to tell me she’d just received it in an email from the Head of Classics at Rugby. It took two hours. Classics, you are a small, small world. And so, I was officially ‘viral’.
And, I hadn’t put my name on it.
Here’s a version with my name on it. Please feel free to share it, as is, wherever you like. And, I’ll have the video done soon…
A karaoke version of the fresh Prince is here: