Curriculum Spotlight: "Where I'm From" Presentations

In Talia Rhodes' humanities class, 5th graders explored their identities through a class project inspired by poet George Ella Lyon poem titled, "Where I'm From."

Students first spent time thinking about identity and what it means by asking questions like:  

  • What is identity?
  • How do cultural factors contribute to your identity?
  • What parts of your identity do you choose for yourself? What parts of your identity are determined by other people or by society?

Next, in order to prepare to write their own "Where I'm From" poems, the 5th graders participated in a "Mystery Bag" activity. During the activity, they used literary devices – personification, similies, and imagery – to describe objects that are important to who they are without naming the actual objects. Their classmates then had to guess the objects based on their vivid descriptions.

After spending the time to think about what is important to their identities, the students were ready to write their poems. Students flexed their creativity, first writing the poems and then creating iMovie presentations to create visuals to go along with poems. When the presentations were finished, families were invited into the classroom to hear and celebrate the students as they shared their stories about where they are from. Watch this presentation by 5th grader, Paris. 



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