Poetry Friday:Where we’re from…

Carol is hosting the Roundup this week at Carol’s Corner.

It’s that time of year in my sixth grade classroom…we’re thinking about the journey we’ve made, the ways in which we have grown, and “where we’re from”.  George Ella Lyon’s Where I’m From has always been the perfect template for an end of the year poetry project.

Here’s my version:

Where We’re From

We’re from 202 and Smithlings,

from comfy chairs and study lunch.

From quiet reading times to

feisty discussions-

who we are and who we are


We’re from learning tools and learning rules

(of work hard, be kind, “turn it in”

and “be on time.”)

We’re from projects and writing,

from gallery walks and turn and talks.

From Reading Journals to “unpacking poetry” –

discovering ourselves through words

and what they can mean.

We’re from our sixth grade year –

from learning and sharing and

                          thinking, and imagining.

We’re from book clubs and Rice Krispie treats

from Red Kayak to The Boy in the Striped Pajamas.

We’re from books, books, books,

and talk, talk, talk.

From laughter and jokes,

and “do you have questions, comments, complaints?”

We’re from the Slice of Life sifting through our daily moments,

from stories we wrote and lives we shared.

We’re from “Sentence Smackdown” to Wonderopolis,

from genre studies to writing celebrations,

from things we loved doing,

and things we learned to (kinda) love.

We’re from “Smith is the name,

and teaching’s the game” to

“Goodbye, be well and SCRAM!”

We’re from worrying about lockers and lunch,

to wondering about who we are, and the people

we want to be.

We’re from friendship and forgiveness,

From being true and being kind.

We’re from a classroom family,

together for just a year.

From a time of making lasting memories,

so many of which make us smile.

In our room there will always be  our pictures,

snapshots of all the moments

we’ve shared together.

We are from those moments,

even now…when we will say for one last time:

“Goodbye, and be well….please come back to visit!”


Mrs. Smith

And, more importantly, here are some of my kids’ poems:


WIF4Another year has come to pass…more memories to count to wards where we’re all from.


11 thoughts on “Poetry Friday:Where we’re from…

  1. Love, love, love all the poetry! This is their year to hold in their hearts because their teacher keeps them close to her heart. What an ending!

  2. It is satisfying to look back to try to “see” from where we came, and then, wonder of wonders, where we’ve landed. Thanks for sharing from your Smithlings, Tara, and your own poem, too, full of love and kindness and excitement.

  3. This is still one of my favorite poetry exercises. It works so well for drawing out the unique and special. Yours is a wonderful gift for your students who will never forget being a Smithling.

  4. I want to be a sixth grader in your class! This is the sixth grade I needed years (cough 36) years ago. What a tribute and celebration and gift for those students. Gosh, they truly become “yours” in so many ways. I hope that you get to see many of these students come back to you in some way…..to repeat some of these lines to you with love in your future. What a special teacher you must be.

  5. Oh, Tara, this is so lovely! Such wonderful memories all wrapped up in your poem. I hope you gifted a copy to each student. Two of the young gals I taught with shared their students’ Where I’m From poems earlier this spring. So much to love in this format. It gives us a glimpse into the important things in each student’s life.

  6. Tara, These are beautiful! What a special family you and your students have created! I am imagining each child receiving a copy of this poem, and reading it again and again and again for many years. I’m sharing your student poems with our seventh grade teacher, who is going to start the year with “Where I’m From” poems.

  7. Tara–your poem captured a wonderful classroom community and a year of growth. I do hope you shared it with your students. Their poems are also treasures. I love this format! Thanks so much for sharing!

  8. I love doing Where I’m From poems with my students and your idea of doing one about the whole class is a great one. I think I’ll try it next year. thereisnosuchthingasagodforsakentown.blogspot.com

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