Now is a time to engage students, young and old, in learning about National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman and the deep meaning of and tradition behind her poetry. The first lesson is a Teach This and comes from Learning for Justice (formerly known as Teaching Tolerance). The second lesson, by Carol Jago and featured as a New York Times Lesson of the Day, provides learning on the poet herself, occasional poetry, and understanding the tradition of “The Hill We Climb.”

Learning for Justice, a program that emphasizes social justice and anti-bias, shares a lesson on creative expression as a commentary on democracy. The lesson uses National Youth Poet Laureate Amanda Gorman’s 2021 presidential inauguration poem “The Hill We Climb” as well as additional works by Gorman, Langston Hughes, Elizabeth Alexander, and others. The lesson includes options for face-to-face or remote instruction.

Teach This: “The Hill We Climb” and the 2021 Inauguration

Learning for Justice
January 20, 2021


Author and longtime English teacher Carol Jago shares a lesson for introducing students to Amanda Gorman, the youngest inaugural poet in U.S. history, and for considering Gorman’s work as part of a tradition of occasional poetry. The lesson also includes options for students to write their own poems.