Attention performing teachers who love to get their students out of their seats and involve them in ancient history! This pack contains lyrics to an original song and a poem about Julius Caesar's assassination, as well as an MP3 of the song with vocals if you don't sing and an MP3 without vocals for you to use with your students once you've learned the song. The only part they really need to know is the chorus, and believe me, it's catchy enough that they'll be singing along quickly if you print out the lyrics for them! Make no mistake, it's silly and catchy and sounds more like a sappy country song, but there are verses about Brutus, Marc Antony, Julius Caesar and Calpurnia, Caesar's wife. Did you know she had a dream that something truly terrible would happen to Caesar if he left the house the day he was assassinated by 60 fellow senate members?!
This song can be used once the basic facts of Caesar's assassination have been taught. I have students wear cowboy and cowgirl hats they bring in from home, and I provide cheap bandanas (which I wash after use!) to tie around their necks. Those who bring in their hats are automatically chosen to be senators for the acting part of this lesson. Then I choose some others to wear the bandanas and be senators, too. I assign students to silently act out verses about Marc Antony, Brutus, Caesar and Calpurnia. These are typically the hams of the group :) Before the song begins, I show them simple movements or tell them things to call out during their verses and they help themselves to my collections of white sheets (togas) and leafy headdresses (courtesy of the local floral craft store!) so they are dressed up for the performance. For every chorus, my hatted and kerchief-ed students act out the backstabbing gesture with imaginary daggers (they love this!). And finally, the student playing Caesar gets to "kick the bucket" and drop to the floor when the last line of the song is sung. After the song (and ensuing laughter!), we discuss the role each of these people played in the fall of the Roman Republic and the ultimate rise of the Empire. I have also included an original poem about Caesar's achievements and the ultimate reason he was assassinated by his "friends". The lines of the poem are numbered to help students analyze them.
In all, this is a fun way to involve your students in learning about the fall of the Roman Republic and the Rise of the Roman Empire!