Painting Self-Portraits

For our 2nd week of poetry, Hamline 6th graders explored the concept of self-portraits. Students looked at the artwork of famous Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, who was known for creating unique self-portraits of herself. In one portrait Kahlo painted herself with her pet parrot Bonito, while in another portrait, Frida paints herself sitting in a chair with scissors, surrounded by locks of her own hair on the floor. In her portraits Frida revealed her thoughts and feelings and how she saw herself as an individual.

Together we read the poem, “Self-Portrait with my loose hijab,” by Noora S., a former 7th grader from Peterson Elementary. In her poem Noora talks about how people respond negatively when her hair sticks out from under her hijab. I wish to shout back at them but won’t/because I like to respect others even if they don’t respect me/It’s hard to keep the hair in sometimes/ I get confused on why people care.

Inspired by Noora S., students created Self-Portrait poems, which represent their own identities, how they see themselves and how they wish to be seen by others.

Mr. Marroquin’s 6th Grade
Group 1

Self-Portrait with My Dog
By Joel C.

Something that I like is that my dog
clams me down. Sometimes they
make me laugh or sometimes they
just want to sleep. They get me in a
a good mood.

Self-Portrait with Black Clothes
By: Alexander J.

I like to wear black clothes because,
I don’t like colorful clothes.
Colorful clothes are too bright,
and make me seem more noticeable.
Black clothes don’t make me feel

Mr. Marroquin’s 6th Grade
Group 2

By Michelle Gomez

I wear make-up cause I feel pretty.
It makes me feel calm, it makes me comfortable.
When I’m in the hall, covering my insecurity,
I feel brave.

I was raised in a Mexican household
where everyone talks down on you.
Wearing make-up makes me brave.

Flying Away
By Ruby S.

Flying like a plane,
but I don’t know where

I wish I could fly away just like
how a bird could.

I wish I was born to fly, but no
I don’t come with superpowers.

I believe I can fly.

By Marcus T. 

because…. it is something I will enjoy,
and I think it will be something that
I will have fun the more I look into it,
and I want to learn the history.

These are so many things to think about
and also, its hard sport, but I want to
learn about it, see knew things and see
the things I love.

I’m hoping I will play it and also
to have fun.

Ms. Torres 6th grade
Group 3

Self-portrait as the Flash
Joshua A.

I picked the Flash because he is my childhood hero. When I was a little kid I would always watch him with my dad and we had lego flash toys and everything we talked about it would about the Flash. Every time I got out of school I would watch the Flash with my dad and we had so much flash toys. My whole room was full of Flash. That is the only thing I really have connected to my dad

Isabella F.C.

el rosado es tan lindo

como los lirios del valle,

los lazos rosados,

cómo rosita fresita,

el atardecer,

los algodones de azucar,

los cerditos,

los gatos,

la lluvia,

En fin el rosado es un color muy lindo.

By: Angelica M.

Something that represents me is basketball.

My favorite basketball player is my brother because I like the way he
plays basketball.

My favorite basketball number is #8 and #5 because #8 is my jersey
number and #5 is my brother’s jersey’s number.

I love basketball cause when I am distant or zoned out basketball is
always there when i need it.

When I am playing basketball everything goes away.


More Self-Portrait artwork from 6th graders



“Writing poetry makes me feel like I can see myself, like I can see my reflection, but not in a mirror, in the world. I write and I know I can be reflected.”
-Oscar S.

“Writing poetry makes me feel free.”
-Buenda D.

“Writing poetry is like your best friend.”
-Jessica M.