- Have students read the poem "Where I Am From.” and discuss it.
- Then, have them brainstorm their favorite foods, family sayings, celebrations, items found around their homes, people important to them, and places they like to visit.
- Encourage them to use all their senses as they describe and recall.
For instructions, a template and examples of this activity, see: Where I Am From Poem.
• A sixth-grade teacher has students write “I Am From” poems in October and shares the results with family members at the fall parent-teacher conference. He says, “It took some time for parents to really feel comfortable with a new teacher with their kids. The poems made conversation with the parents really relaxed, because we were going over these funny things that the kids were interested in that surprised them. Sharing the poems made all the difference.”
• A high-school teacher uses the “Where I’m From” poems to get to know her students and their families.” It is such a safe way to experience poetry. and each kid's cultural background. Plus, it requires so much thought about what really matters in one’s life and what the things are that have truly shaped the students into the individuals they have become.”
A teacher seeking more ways to build art into day to day activities had students illustrate their poems. Another added photos and pictures collected by the kids. One wonderful after-school project resulted in the creation of a mural.
How would you use this poem? Share your ideas and results in the comment box below.