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Langston Hughes Teacher Resources
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A carefully crafted three-day lesson plan integrates poetry and visual art. By analyzing and comparing Langston Hughes' poem "Mother and Son" and Romare Bearden's collage "The Dove," readers explore the theme of hope. The lesson plan activates prior knowledge about the Civil Rights Movement. Additionally, it incorporates journal writing, jigsaw work groups, art diaries, drafting a reading response, and peer editing with a rubric. Image and background information on the NEH website.
Explore famous Americans by viewing a slide-show presentation and reading their works. Learners view images of poetry by Langston Hughes and famous writings by Booker T. Washington. They read the book More Than Anything Else, and complete a story analysis worksheet. Extend your studies with research on these individuals.
Students research Langston Hughes poetry for his use of figurative language. In this poetry analysis lesson, students research the life and poetry of Langston Hughes and his use of vivid words. Students complete 23 different activities for the lesson and choose adjectives that describe their sensory experiences.
Students analyze the use of voice in Langston Hughes' poetry. In this poetry analysis lesson, students define voice in poetry and write journal entries to develop their voice as writers. Students write a poem with a clear voice or write about one of the qualities of Langston Hughes' poetic voice.
Discuss the meaning of the phrase tone of voice with the class. They respond to a variety of scenarios where a particular tone would be prevalent. They then read "Mother to Son" without knowing the title and answer some questions about the poem's tone and voice. In the end, they write a poem of their own where they are giving advice to someone.
The work of Langston Hughes opens the door to research into the origin and legacy of the Harlem Renaissance and how the literature of the period can be viewed as a commentary on race relations in America. In addition, groups are assigned one critical approach to use to analyze Hughes’ play, Mulatto: A Play of the Deep South.
Reflect upon the poetry of the Harlem Renaissance by looking at some of Langston Hughes' works. "I, Too" and "American Heartbreak" are mentioned, as well as work by Malcolm X and Smokey Robinson. Specific questions help guide discussion and reading of the poems. The lesson format is a bit jumbled, but the questions offer good direction.
Students discover how to improve their writing through the revision process. In this narrative writing lesson, students view examples of Langston Hughes' poem "Ballad of Booker T." and note the changes that were made to his original draft. Students discuss how to improve their own poems and work with a partner on revisions.