The Hughes News

Sophomore Honors English Newsletter ~ April 2019

Our Class Website: The Lifelong Learner

Click here to see our class syllabus, FAQs, parent resources, student projects, and more!


The clip below is from a fabulous video series on parenting teens, which has me feverishly taking notes--both as a teacher and mother of teenagers. This one, about the importance of shifting from Manager to Consultant, is easier said than done--but a vital lesson about stepping back (slowly!), allowing our teens to learn important life skills. II'm not going to lie: This is a hard one for the Teacher-Lady in the Hughes Casa.
Unit 4: All That Glitters

For Term 4, your student and I will be exploring Unit 4 in Pearson, entitled "All that Glitters." This is from Shakespeare's warning in THE MERCHANT OF VENICE: "All that glisters is not gold." Click on the brown box to see the entire unit.

Big picture


It’s none of their business that you have to learn to write.

Let them think you were born that way.

~Ernest Hemingway

Most honors students enter my classroom in the fall with the ability to craft organized, error-free writing. Which is fabulous. However, most students don't have the tools to take their writing to the next level. (And based on the Traits of an Honors Student, taken from the Honors English course description in the WMHS' Program of Studies, honors students are already supposed to be writing on a more sophisticated level than their college prep counterparts.) One of the tools we recently emulated is Repetition, which is a "rhetorical device writers use to make their point clearer and more memorable" (Your Dictionary).

After looking at some fabulous examples in literature, the students set out to make this sophisticated technique their own. Don't forget: These are my English students--not my Creative Writing students. But you'd never know. Take a look at some of my favorites below.

  • He fell hard. And he fell fast.

  • All of the boys underestimated her. To them, she looked like a girl, dressed like a girl, talked like a girl, and acted like a girl. But when the race started and her feet sped away from the start, she ran like a cheetah and left the boys in the dust.

  • I wish only to hear the sound of the happy children in the park, the sound of the wind blowing through the trees, the sound of the dogs barking on their never-ending chase of the squirrels, the sound of parents hoping their kids stay safe, the song of the old ice cream truck, the sound of a ball being caught in the old leather of a baseball mitt, the sound of freedom. The sound of summer.

  • She had the giggles that day; after her friend tripped and almost fell, she laughed. After her teacher made a terrible dad-joke, she laughed. After reading something mildly funny in her choice book, she laughed, spreading her happiness through her ringing laughter.

  • People are afraid of the unknown, afraid of the unexpected, afraid of being afraid.

  • They went back in while I was still standing at the edge, they went back in but I stood there paralyzed, they went back in. But I never could.

  • I hate them. I hate the way they stare. I hate the way they talk. I hate the way they rate us girls, and I hate the way they look at us, up and down and up and down. We are people too, not the animals to which you've reduced us.

  • Her eyes were beautiful. Her eyes were beautiful for so many reasons: her eyes were beautiful because of the emotion they held. Her eyes were beautiful because of their undeniable curiosity. Most importantly, her eyes were beautiful, because when she looked at me with that smile of hers, I could see all of those years of sadness and pain drift away like a stray leaf in the autumn wind.

  • A book. A single book can change your perspective. A book that has so many words and yet only one sentence is needed to change your outlook on the day.

  • We never argue. We never disagree. We never speak up or voice our opinion. We never fall out of place or live on the edge. It’s time we actually do something. It’s finally time we fight back.

  • It’s going to get better. Everything gets better in time and I plan on doing whatever I have to in order to make it better. I will force it to get better.

    • We waited not knowing what would happen. We waited not knowing if we would be happy with the results or not. We waited not knowing if the list would destroy friendships or bring people closer together.

    • What’s outside the window? Only a thousand possibilities. Only a land far away. Anything but here.

    • Tonight, we fight for our fathers, we fight for our mothers, we fight for our sisters, we fight for our sons, we fight for our daughters, we fight for our future. Tonight, my friends, we fight for our freedom.

  • Follow Our Class on Instagram!

    If you are on Instagram, follow our class shenanigans at @msbethhugheswmhs!

    How to Contact Me

    Have a question or concern about your learner? Email is the best way to reach teachers. With the exception of weekends, we will always get back to you within 24 hours.