I Am Someone

I Am Someone is an anthology of personal narrative essays and two collaborative poems by the seventh-grade students of West Bronx Academy for the Future. The title comes from a warm-up activity wherein all students participated in completing the prompts, “I am…,” “I was…,” “I’m afraid…,” and “I hope…” thus illustrating their hopes and fears and examining who they were and who they are now.

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In this anthology, you will find two collaborative poems – “I Am Someone” and “To Graduate from College One Day.” The latter poem was created later in the program as an opportunity to incorporate student learning combined with visions for their future. Working individually, each student developed their essays by defining their core values and identifying an important life moment wherein they recall utilizing those values. They expanded upon their essays through reflection and analysis, taking time to discover what they have learned from their experiences and how they might have changed. Whether you read an introduction or a completed essay, every student challenged themselves to step out of their comfort zones and push past what they initially thought they could achieve. All of the writing in this anthology, whether collaborative or individual, is revealing, reflective, responsive, and resplendent.

This anthology would not have been possible without the relentless commitment of all the teachers. Thank you, Ms. Petrillo, Ms. Santana, Ms. Wannamaker, Ms. Avila, Mr. King, and Mr. Morales, for helping us bring out the writers in these young leaders. This collection is a testament to what is possible when there is inspired collaboration amongst dedicated teachers.

Reflection and introspection, voice and self-definition, these are the skills the students developed during my time with them. Being able to define who we are and how we respond to and live in the world are timeless and powerful skills that will continue to support these students in their development of voice and growth of self. I could not be prouder of their work and dedication. 

Samantha LoCoco, Teaching Artist
Teachers & Writers Collaborative


Featured Writing

I Am Someone (excerpt)

A Collaborative Poem by the 7th-Grade Students of West Bronx Academy for the Future

I’m afraid…
of the world ending
of death
of losing all the people I care about
like my sister, my mom, and everyone I love

I’m afraid…
of being alone
having no one on my side
or my parents splitting up
and leaving my siblings and me on our own

I’m afraid…
of my PS Plus running out
that I won’t hit 90 overall in 2K17
that I’ll lose my PS4
or it will be taken away

I’m afraid…
of things
of nothing
of something
of almost everything

I hope…
to become what I want
to stay the same forever
to be someone different in life
or that I can be less shy

I hope…
the day goes faster
that I make it out of the hood with my family
that I become somebody in life
that our community stops the violence

I hope…
to be a good friend
and not fall in the wrong path
to become an artist,
and say hi to my crush for once

I hope…
to be happy
to be a better person
and to die with no regrets





Teachers & Writers Magazine

Teachers & Writers Collaborative: www.twc.org