By Ashley Stracco, ’24
If you had known Mrs. Hughes as the HMS assistant principal, you might have been surprised to see her in a classroom this year at HHS. But Mrs. Hughes has returned to teaching English, a subject she has loved since her own time in high school.
As an English teacher to freshmen, sophomores and juniors, Mrs. Hughes teaches many different pieces of literature to her students. Her favorite book to teach is “The Things They Carried” by Tim O’Brien, a collection of stories about soldiers in the Vietnam War. She loves how the stories can connect to people in subtle ways and how the author describes how we all live through stories. However, she does not have a favorite book to read herself. She says that would be like choosing a favorite child!
While Mrs. Hughes does not have a favorite book, she does have a favorite TV show and favorite place to travel. She really enjoys the improv comedy show “Whose Line Is It Anyway.” Her favorite place to travel is Poland. She has a 13-year-old son.
Mrs. Hughes wanted to become a teacher after she took an education class at Brandeis University and found it instantly interesting. She loved her foreign language and English classes in high school. She says her teachers were both challenging and fun.
In a year many students and teachers have found challenging, Mrs. Hughes says her students have had a great impact on her. One of her favorite moments this year was seeing a student who was extremely shy overcome her fear of public speaking and give one of the best student speeches that she has ever seen. Another was coming back to school after being very ill for a few weeks; one of her classes made her a giant card with all of their names and many get-well messages. She still has the card!