Hughes Inspires ELA Classes


Talia Shumate

A Langston Hughes poem was the center of ELA classes as it gave students an opportunity to document what they notice in the world around them and to spotlight a famous African-American poet, Langston Hughes.

Langston Huges was born in 1901 on February 1st. He was a social activist, novelist, and playwright. Some of his most famous poems were “I Too”, “Mother to Son”, and “Montage of a Dream Deferred”. Langston Hughes is known for his inspirational and impactful effect on literature but also continued to promote equality and justice. He used his skills to bring awareness, celebrate, and educate.

I wanted to hear what students had to say and how they think of their dreams for the world.”

— Ms. Jenkins


A collective group of reading and writing classes, have all contributed to reading and rewriting the poem with their own ideas. Language arts teacher, Ms. Jenkins, came up with the idea to have students describe a world they dream of by using the Hughes poem, “I Dream A World,” as a guide. The goal of the assignment was to help students determine what a perfect world would look like to them. To be descriptive and expository as to what they wish to see in this world.

“There have been great leaders in the world like Dr. Martin Luther King and great influencers in the world including authors like Langston Hughes who help inspire students with their speeches and their words,” said Ms. Jenkins. “But I wanted to hear what students had to say and how they think of their dreams for the world.”

As students of the upcoming generation, this assignment takes the opinions of students into consideration. The poem “I Dream A World” breaks down the idea of what a perfect world would look like. Each published poem is different from the last, making it unique in its own way. This way you can hear what each student has to say as it portrays the assignment.

Below are some examples made by students.

“I dream of a world where people will treat others with the respect and kindness they would like to be treated with. I dream of a world where everyone will be treated equally. No one is better than the other. Of such I dream, my world.”

“I dream a world where we make our voices heard, so the ones who keep their ears shut and eyes closed can hear the sounds of change. Of such, I dream my world.”

“I dream of a world where our society will build a path of peace. Where we will not be against each other but united with each other. Where the skies will be as bright as the friendships we make.

“I dream a world where man will be free from the eyes of others’ judgment, for one to be themselves and respected as an individual who is no different than everyone else.”

“ I dream a world where there is no such thing as depression, anxiety, stress, and anything that can ruin people’s lives.”