Langston Hughes: A Poet's Life

Chapter 4

Learning Goals

In this chapter, you will learn to:

  • Read sight words and functional words
  • Read the digraphs ch, sh, and th
  • Read simple texts
  • Identify main ideas, characters, and events from a reading
  • Use upper case letters for proper nouns
  • Write complete sentences
  • Write a short paragraph

Talk About It

  • Do you know any stories about your family from a long time ago?
  • How is it helpful to know stories about where you come from?
  • Make a guess about who took care of Langston when he was a kid.

Picture Dictionary

lawyer-28838_640 stories
lawyer racism stories
basketball-652470_640 crystals-155644_640 boots-691174_640
proud crystal stair
splinter wood-601830_640 carpet-162070_640
splinter board carpet
Put the above words in alphabetical order.

___________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________

Check your work with the Answer Key at the end of this chapter.
Make a sentence using one of the above words.

___________________________________________________________

___________________________________________________________

Ask your instructor to check your work.

Word Skills

Word Patterns

A digraph is when two letters make one sound. The letters ch, sh, and th are digraphs.

The letters ch make a /ch/ sound like in chin.

smile-122705_640

The letters sh make a /sh/ sound like in ship.

astronira-213674_640

The letters th make a /th/ sound like in thumb.

thumb-422147_640

Practice reading the words.
ch sh th
chip rash thin
chat dish math
rich shop path
chop wish thug
such fish moth
much shed bath
Match each picture to a word above.
bowl-303875_640 shower-305464_640 chop
1. ________________ 2. ________________ 3. ________________
car-160343_640 guy-40944_640 trout-294469_640
4. ________________ 5. ________________ 6. ________________
log-cabin-304921_640 chip moth-645812_640
7. ________________ 8. _______________ 9. ________________
Check your work with the Answer Key at the end of this chapter.
Read each sentence. Then cover it up. Try to write it. Use upper case letters correctly. Use periods and question marks correctly.

a. I need to chop this log.
_______________________________________________

b. The cop got the thug.
_______________________________________________

c. I wish to be good at math.
_______________________________________________

d. Why is there a fish in the bath?
_______________________________________________

e. You can have the last chip.
_______________________________________________

You will see these words in the story. They all have digraphs.

they the these Charles she

Use Your Reading Skills

Listen to the Chapter 4. Then read Chapter 4 in BC Reads: Adult Literacy Fundamental English – Reader 2. If you see a word you do not know, look in a big dictionary to find the meaning.


Check Your Understanding

1. Who was Langston’s dad?
__________________________________________

2. When was Langston born?
__________________________________________

3. Why did James leave the USA?
__________________________________________

4. Who took care of Langston?
__________________________________________

5. What made Langston proud of who he was?
__________________________________________

Read the poem with a partner. Talk about these questions.

6. The mother in the poem says her life has been like a staircase. What do the stairs look like? What do you think this says about her life?

7. Can you find a word in the poem that rhymes with stair?

Check your work with the Answer Key at the end of this chapter.

Writing

Grammar Rule

Begin a person’s name with an upper case letter.

Meet my friend, Al.  – YES

Meet my friend, al.  – NO

Begin the name of a place with an upper case letter.

We are going to China.  – YES

We are going to china.   – NO

Use upper case letters where needed.

1. we will stay with beth in japan.
_______________________________________________

2. have you been to iran?
_______________________________________________

3. i grew up in kenya.
_______________________________________________

4. tash and sam had a baby.
_______________________________________________

5. did you hear meg got a new job?
_______________________________________________

6. tim took a trip to finland.
_______________________________________________

7. bill moved to toronto.
_______________________________________________

8. i want to lie by the sea in mexico.
_______________________________________________

9. you got a call from seth.
_______________________________________________

10. my dog is named huck.
_______________________________________________

Check your work with the Answer Key at the end of this chapter.

Writing Task

Complete these sentences to make a paragraph about your childhood.
  • I grew up in…
  • I liked to play…
  • I was good at…
  • I wanted to be a … when I grew up.
  • I was encouraged by…

Remember:
– Use an upper case letter to begin each sentence.
– Use an upper case letter for the word I.
– Use an upper case letter for the names of people and places.
– End each sentence with a period or question mark.
– You may wish to type your paragraph on a computer.

Answer Key

Picture Dictionary
board carpet crystal
lawyer proud racism
splinter stair stories
Word Skills
QUESTION ANSWER
1 dish
2 bath
3 chop
4 rich
5 thug
6 fish
7 shed
8 chip
9 moth
Check Your Understanding  
QUESTION ANSWER
1 Langston’s dad was James Hughes.
2 Langston was born in 1902.
3 James left the USA because he was fed up with racism. He was not allowed to work as a lawyer because he was black.
4 Langston’s grandmother, Mary, took care of him.
5 Mary’s stories made Langston proud of who he was.
6 The stairs have tacks, splinters, boards torn up, and no carpet. This tells us that the mother was poor and her life was hard.
7 Bare rhymes with stair.
Writing
QUESTION ANSWER
1 We will stay with Beth in Japan.
2 Have you been to Iran?
3 I grew up in Kenya.
4 Tash and Sam had a baby.
5 Did you hear Meg got a new job?
6 Tim took a trip to Finland.
7 Bill moved to Toronto.
8 I want to lie by the sea in Mexico.
9 You got a call from Seth.
10 My dog is named Huck.

Attributions

See the Attributions page near the end of this book.