This academic year, 826 Valencia continued to collaborate with Starr King Elementary in Trisha Huynh’s fourth grade class online. For their first project, students wrote “I Am From” poems, reflecting the San Francisco Unified School District initiative to embrace student identity. This is the second year 826 Valencia worked with Starr King; growth in student writing is tangible. Students share about themselves, their families, favorite foods and things they love, illuminating the beauty and diversity that’s San Francisco.
I am an Independent Woman
A’Nijha Smith-Evans, Age 10
I am an independent woman,
One day I’ll be as smart as my mom and dad.
I am from my baby sister.
The first time I got to hold her she was as light as a pillow.
The second time I got to feed her.
When I go into the room, I see her little face and it makes me happy.
I liked when I got to see my baby brother for the first time.
He is growing up as fast as me.
Because they are so little, they can get hurt and get sick easily.
I hope to graduate, go to college, get a degree, and become an independent WOMAN!
I Love My Family
Kayden Duckett, Age 10
I am from seafood boils.
It has crab, shrimp, potatoes, corn, mussels.
This is my favorite because it’s good.
My tacos, which have ground beef, green onions, tomatoes, sour cream and cheese.
My family is special to me because they are my ancestors and they made me.
My friends are special to me because I play with them.
They’re cool because we do a lot of stuff together.
Some of my family is from the Philippines and some of my family is from California.
I am multicultural.
Aliyah Lewis, Age 9
I am from church food.
After church we all go to eat, mostly dessert food.
The food smells like a sugary goodness that any kid would want.
I am from my dog.
My purple, blue, and red unicorn plush with stars and the horn is squishy red.
I am from riding skateboards down ramps, playing games with my dad, and cooking breakfast with my sister.
We like to make eggs and waffles.
I like to read.
It makes me feel inspired.
Marsean Robinson, Age 9
I am from Potrero Hill.
I am from Cairo, a black and white pitbull who learned how to fetch after four weeks.
I wake up bored because everybody is still sleeping.
When I am opening presents I feel happy as a dog playing.
Sometimes my mom makes cookies and dinner that smells
So good that I can’t even describe the smell.
My Lolz and My Life
Nataya Laborin, Age 10
I am from my birthday because I get cake and see all the people in my family.
I get presents and get to buy clothes and Lolz dolls for myself.
I am from my dad and mom who said I am a good big sister to my newborn sister.
I have to help my sister with her work.
I want a husky when I am older and I want to be a vet.
Maria Sagapolu, Age 9
My family is from Samoa, but I was born in SF.
We make cookies, gingerbread houses, we like to open presents.
Our family likes to play games; Uno, Twister, Candy Land.
For birthdays, we have a lot of BBQ, egg salad, and shrimp.
My family is from all over the world.
We like to play games together like the yoga challenge.
“I am from Samoa.”
I always say, “share.”
Shatia Pease-Finklea, Age 10
I am from burgers with ketchup and mayonnaise, but no mustard, pickles, melted cheese, and lettuce.
I am from hot sauce so hot that my cousin, a boy who loves hot sauce, put hot sauce on my taco and it was soooo hot,
I ran around the backyard trying to find some way to cool off.
I found a bucket of water, almost like a tub, and poured it all on my face.
The Best Times In My Life
Kingston Morris, Age 10
I am from drawing.
I like to sketch a lot.
I usually use pencil, paper, and pens when I want to color it
I would use colored pencils and very very thin markers, skinny as a piece of paper.
I am from, I love you.
Christmas is one of my favorite holidays because you get to receive things,
And you get to give things.
When I receive something I also try to give.
Laugh Out Loud
La Diamond Taylor-Barefield, Age 9
I am from baby doll.
It has pink hair and a gold diaper.
It’s Black like me, and it also has pink lipstick. I love pink.
I am from a notebook and my spoon, my favorite pencil and ball.
I am from singing and dancing; mostly to hip hop and slow dancing.
I like to play with my little sister sometimes.
A Hint of BBQ Sauce
Marcus Blackwell, Age 9
I came from Sacramento and my sister came from Daly City and my brother came from Brazil.
My mom says to me, “Don’t miss school or you’re not going to get a job.”
My family cares about me because I am the youngest in my family.
A food that is special to me is turkey on Thanksgiving because she adds a hint of BBQ sauce.
Laura Quiroga, Age 9
I am from my family, the ones I love,
The diary because my grandfather gave it to me,
The stuffed panda named Bobo (pro-nounced Bo Bo),
Includes coding (my father is a computer programmer),
Also writing (my grandfather wrote poems before he retired in Colombia),
Baking (with my mom).
I am from my parents’ voices, which say this message almost everyday:
“You’re very creative.”
“Eres tan bueno escribiendo.”
I am from me, a writer and a reader.
My Loved Ones
Kaliyah Mozeke, Age 9
I am from my mom who puts food on the table and clothes on my back,
My friends who always stick up for me.
I am from Christmas because of the presents.
I get to spend it with my loved ones.
Martin Luther King Jr. Day because it is traditional.
I am from puppies because they are cute and are helpful,
Toy cars, and let’s go fishing.
All About My Family
Blake Verdun, age 10
I am from my family,
My friends, like my best friends,
My mom because she cooks for me and gives me a home.
My step-dad is as caring as someone who cares for the environment.
My step-dad because he stepped up to be my dad,
My step-dad is big like a bear.
In my family, family comes first.
This means that it is really special to care about your family,
My family is as important as food.
I Like Mashed Potatoes
Kaedo Valdes, age 9
I am from my mom’s spaghetti.
I eat my mom’s spaghetti in the dining room.
And I like mashed potatoes.
I am from mom because she makes me food.
She makes sure I am happy and gets me clothes.
My brother, too, because he looks out for me.
When somebody is being mean to me, he tells them to stop.
My Mom’s Tamales
Byron Cortez, age 9
I am from my mom’s tamales,
I am from my family.
Without family you would be alone, no fun, you will be sad.
I am from my friends,
Going to the beach and the park.
We have fun inside games like Uno and Roblox.
It’s Hot and Cold Sometimes
Lyric White, age 9
We are from San Francisco; it’s hot and cold and sometimes fun.
My mom tells me to play with my brother.
My mom says nicely, “Lyric, will you please clean up your room?”
What I love about my family is that they are nice to me and I love them so much.
I feel happy and joyful with them.
We all have talents—my talent is dancing and doing the splits and handstands.
We’re so out of control and sometimes we love doing a lot of stuff together like art, like sewing.
Paris Raynaldo, age 9
I am from my mom because she makes me food.
She also makes sure I have things like pants.
My sister because she loves me.
My favorite holiday is Christmas because I got a legendary and an epic Fortnite skin.
I also got a toy Hot Wheel.
Armani Mohamed, age 9
I am from fried chicken as crunchy as cucumbers and Crystal Hot Sauce.
I am from my mom because she brought me into the world,
My oldest brother Bubby because he is the nicest person in the world to me, and he reads a lot to me.
When he comes to my house, I sometimes cry because I’m excited to see him.
All About My Life
Rai’vyn Jackson, age 10
I want to become a doctor because my mom is a doctor.
We are unique. We care for others. And we dress chic.
There is always time to have fun, even when we are doing work in the sun.
I am from finishing my homework and playing with my snakes.
They feel like fish. Their bellies are really scaly.
My two snakes are very friendly.
It’s very fun because I always take them wherever I go somewhere.
They’re always peeking out of my backpack.