Thinking About Symbols | Sabin 4th Grade

We read “La Muralla/The Mural” by Nicolas Guillen, and we are talking and thinking about symbols. In this poem Guillen writes the story of how a mural was made and what the images on the mural symbolize. Guillen writes, “Tun, Tun/Knock, knock” and opens the mural to positive symbols and closes the mural to negative ones. 

During our poetry workshop we talked about the ways a symbol can represent a group, a person, a story or emotions.

Students talked, wrote and drew, about symbols that are important to them. Here are some of the poems they have written and symbols they have drawn!  


Leímos “La Muralla/The Mural” escrito por Nicolas Guillen, y estamos hablando sobre y pensando en que son símbolos. En este poema Guillen escribe un cuento de cómo se planea una muralla y que simbolizan las imágenes de la muralla. Guillen escribe, “Tun, Tun/Knock, Knock” y abre la muralla a las cosas buenas y cierra la muralla a las cosas malas.

Durante nuestro taller de poesía hablemos de como un símbolo puede representar un grupo, una persona, un cuento o emociones.

Los estudiantes hablaron, escribieron y dibujaron símbolos que tienen importancia para ellos. ¡Mira algunos de los poemas y dibujos!


(a bed can represent dreaming, where you can be free)


By Chanel


My dreams are finally set free

my heart is doubled, my life is quiet

my dreams are finally set free.



Your Mom’s House

by Princess


I go to my friend’s mom’s house, and when I get there we study

so we got a book, and a book teaches you something you didn’t know.


When we were done, we went on our phone

and did Tik-Tok.

A phone wakes up.


After that, we heard a door knock

and the person there say’s my friend’s mom got flowers,

so we put them in a vase.

A vase is a flower’s home.




The Goods and the Bads of Life

By Elise


The great blue heaven you see

one day in a lake, a protective

shiels, catching fish, catching food.


The fish in the water, got

caught, got dropped, now belly-up

and before you know it, is dead.


The water, the lake, eve on the most beautiful calm day

the worst things can happen.



I Fly

By Jamya


I fly through the sky like a butterfly

then I wonder why?

Bouncing in the sunrise

air blowing through like the hard waves

and still I wonder why?



Symbols of Soft Things

by Julian


We can all say that cotton candy is soft as a bed

because it is like the pillow

and the mattress on the bed.


And snow is smooth as sand,

sand on the branch it is like

your head is on a pillow,

you can just feel it and how smooth it is.


Music flows through the wind and it flows like the air.




by Alondra



are full 

with nature.


Their like fairies,

and beautiful.



Admiración Puede Representar Amor

por Yulieth


Yo admiro a mi mama 

Como la cocina, 

Como hacer sus propias cosas

Como limpia y hacer su propio

Es fuerza

Y ella ama a mi papa

Ama ami hermano

Y me ama a mi y yo

La amo mucho

Y la quiero mucho 

Porque ella es una super mama



by Ozias


Fire is danger

Fire spreads like wildfire

Wildfire is not good, it burns to ashes

Fire will never stop growing

Water is a supply, but can it stop wildfire?


Maybe that’s a story for another time.





La Muralla

Nicolás Guillén

Para hacer esta muralla, tráiganme todas las manos

…Ay, una muralla que vaya
desde la playa hasta el monte, desde el monte hasta la playa, bien, allá sobre el horizonte.

¡Tun, tun!
¿Quién es?
Una rosa y un clavel… —¡Abre la muralla!
¡Tun, tun!
¿Quién es?
El sable del coronel… —¡Cierra la muralla!
¡Tun, tun!
¿Quién es?
La paloma y el laurel… —¡Abre la muralla!
¡Tun, tun!
¿Quién es?
El alacrán y el ciempiés… —¡Cierra la muralla!
Al corazón del amigo, abre la muralla;
al veneno y al puñal, cierra la muralla;


al mirto y la yerbabuena, abre la muralla;

al diente de la serpiente, cierra la muralla;
al ruiseñor en la flor,
abre la muralla… 


Alcemos una muralla
juntando todas las manos;
los negros, sus manos negras,
los blancos, sus blancas manos. Una muralla que vaya
desde la playa hasta el monte, desde el monte hasta la playa, bien, allá sobre el horizonte… 


The Mural

Nicolás Guillén

To make this wall
Bring me all the hands

A wall that goes
from the beach to the mountain,
from the mountain to the beach,
so far upon the horizon. 

Knock, Knock!
Who’s there?
A rose and a Carnation…
Open the wall!
Knock, Knock!
Who’s there?
The Colonel’s sword…
Close the Wall!
Knock, Knock!
Who’s there?
The dove and the bay leaf…
Open the Wall!
Knock, Knock!
Who’s there?
The scorpion and the centipede… Close the Wall!!
To the heart of the friend,
Open the wall;
To the poison and the dagger, Close the wall;
To the myrtle and the mint,
Open the wall;
To the fang of the snake,
Close the wall;
To the mockingbird on the flower, Open the wall! 

Let’s raise a wall
Using all the hands;
The black [and brown], their black [and brown] hands,
The white, their white hands.
A wall that goes
from the beach to the mountain,
from the mountain to the beach,
so far upon the horizon.




“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.