By: Ashvin Nagarajan
I laughed at the comedy, “The Merchant of Venice,” as much as the next guy, but the current educational system has become a tragedy. We sit in classrooms reading the words of obsolete individuals. How can we forget that Shakespeare has been dead for more than 400 years!
Do we use history books written in the 1600s? Do we use science books written by staunch disbelievers of evolution? Do we still hand out parchment and a quill for students to take notes? I thought not.
I will give you an example of Shakespeare’s folly: at the start of “Macbeth,” we see three witches who stand around a caldron and tell the fate of brave Macbeth. I hope by now you realize the issue, but I will spell it out anyway. We are allowing our children to read fairy tales like they are in preschool again. Shakespeare’s texts are wrought with such nonsensical passages that students remember nothing more than ghosts and spells.
We need to stop poisoning our youth with the words of some skeleton and start looking towards the future. Our high schoolers need to prepare for the rigors of college and their careers, not remain stuck in cute, make-believe worlds.
Before you start tearing your hair or start making calls to pull your child out of school, keep reading. I have the solution right here. In my extensive travels, searching for the best education tools, I discovered a wonderful resource called “The Simpsons.” It is well-crafted show that utilizes the vocabulary and sentence structure most commonly found in everyday communication. We want our children to be learning from modern writers and artists. Only then will they be prepared to make connections to their own lives and have a meaningful experience. Furthermore, TV shows take up a fraction of the time of a long-winded text describing a dumb dream or something. Within a single class period, students could watch a full episode and unpack the significance. Besides, I’m not Hamlet’s therapist so I would appreciate it if he kept his thoughts to himself.
I’ve already written to the Principal, Superintendent, and the President of the United States, but I need your support to right this injustice. Take control of your child’s education, and fight to leave Shakespeare’s books in the grave!