This is one of those words that makes contemporary kids crack up. Whenever it shows up in the plays, they fall about laughing.
To them “Ho” means “whore.” And a very particular brand of whore, no less.
What they almost never realize is how many actual references to whores there are in the plays. These accidental whorish moments are hilarious to them – meanwhile the actual whore jokes sail right on past.
But I am not the sort to make sure they get them. I might be the sort to suggest that there are many references like this in a scene and send the students in search of them. It’s always more fun as a discovery. May I never be that creepy teacher who’s like, “This is a sexual allusion, kids. Get it? Get it? Let me explain it.”