Not only is April National Poetry Month, but the 18th is also National Haiku Poetry Day! So, of course, I just had to offer this simple but creative Haiku Poetry Lesson for you to enjoy.
Writing poetry can be a challenging exercise for many people, my kids pretty much cringe when I say we are going to write some poetry today.
Thanks to their revulsion to writing poems, I have searched high and low to find some way to make it less painful for them.
This is how I came up with this idea to create my own lesson plan for writing a Haiku poem, and today, I’m sharing it with you.
What is a Haiku Poem?
A Haiku is a classical Japanese poem that doesn’t usually rhyme and is composed of three lines.
It is unique in that it has a set number of syllable rules that must be followed.
The rules are that the first and last lines of the poem must be five syllables and the middle line must be seven syllables.
This five, seven, five rule makes for some amazing poems that will oftentimes make you laugh.
It’s just something about the tone of these poems that I find cause me a chuckle or two.
Here is the basic structure of the Haiku:
5 syllable line
7 syllable line
5 syllable line
Now in order to achieve the proper Haiku, your kids will need to have a good understanding of syllables.
I was taught a neat little trick, that to the amusement of my kids, I still use today.
It’s simple, yet effective.
When saying a word, I place my open hand backside up, under my chin, just below without touching.
When you speak a word, your chin moves down and touches your hand.
Every time it touches, that is a syllable.
I know it sounds kinda silly, but hey, it works.
Alright, what word did you just try? I know you tried it, you wanted to see if I was nuts, and I am, but we’ll save that conversation for another time.
Another way to check syllables is to pay attention to when you exhale when saying a word.
I like to clap on my exhales to really drive the point home.
Did you find that you pushed air out on the ex and then again on the ha?
These are the syllables, you’re welcome.
Now back to the lesson plan.
It’s a straightforward writing lesson that consists of four pages.
The first is the instructional page which explains what a Haiku is and gives an example I wrote for you, yes I really do hate wind by the way.
The second page is for brainstorming and writing a rough draft.
Brainstorming is an important step in the writing process and shouldn’t be skipped. Plus this gives your kids a space to explore different subjects they might want to use for their poem.
By the way, traditionally, Haiku poems are about nature, but really they can be about anything.
Also, your kids might find that they need to write more than one rough draft, mine did. For this, you can either just print off extra copies of page two or they can use scratch paper.
The third page is where they will write the final draft in black ink onto this traditional Japanese lantern which can then be cut out and hung up around your schoolroom.
This is a great way to show off some of the hard work they have put into writing this poem.
Our poems are still up in our school room and let me tell you, whenever they catch my eye, I still find myself smiling with delight.
The last page is an example of my poem Wind, and how it looks on the lantern, pretty fancy right?
Grab your copy of my Haiku Mini-Lesson plan below, then come back next month for my May freebie.
Until Next Time…
Looking for more poetry lessons?
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You can read more about the different poetry lessons offered within the bundle here.