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The Basics

In the Dream Flag Project, we are creating expressions of our dreams for people--our personal flags for the world we live in. The flags are connected together on lines for display in our communities--each flag an individual expression, collectively as lines of hope and of diversity. They were inspired by public displays of Nepalese prayer flags. There are only a few basics. Size and Shape The size and shape of each flag should be 8 ½ inches in width by 11 inches in height (22 cm width by 28 cm height). The flags will be hung vertically so it is best if they read that way. Read More...

MLK Day Lesson Plan

Langston Hughes is poet who grew up under Jim Crow laws just like the character Cassie in Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry by Mildred Taylor. He published his first book of poems in 1926, just seven years before Cassie’s story takes place. He wrote about how things were and what he could dream of. In some ways, he set the stage for people like Martin Luther King, Jr. who spoke about his dreams about 40 years later. King wrote: Read More...

Dream Flag Song Score

This is a musical score of our setting of "Dream Keeper" by Langston Hughes, our theme poem. It is arranged in two parts with chords for piano and guitar. Read More...

Poetry Lesson Plan

This is an outline for a unit that might take three to six normal class periods and result in the writing of Dream Flag poems. It begins with a look at the life and dream poetry of Langston Hughes, the inspiration of the Dream Flag Project, and continues with some ideas for writing. The Dream Flag will be a piece of 8 ½ x 11 in. fabric with an original poem on it. Read More...

Dream Poetry Writing Assignments

Here is a series of dream poetry assignments. They are intended to go from easy (structured) to hard (unstructured), to help students think metaphorically, and to help students get away from the idea that rhyming defines poetry. Read More...

Lesson Ideas for Selected Langston Hughes Poems

Here are some classroom ideas for a few Langston Hughes poems found in the anthology The Dream Keeper. Most of these are geared for upper elementary or middle school students. The ideas are not necessarily about dream poems or writing them, but are aimed at helping students to understand and experience the way poems work. This may help them as poetry writers as well. Read More...

The Poet’s Voice: Langston Hughes and You

The Poet's Voice: Langston Hughes and You. This is a lesson from EdSite, a project of the National Endowment for the Humanities. It's central question is: "What qualities make a writer's voice forceful, distinctive, and memorable?" It includes readings and directions for discussion, 5 student journal entries, and a writing assignment focused on voice (or Dream Flag poems in our case). Appropriate for upper middle school and high school. Could be adapted for others. Read More...