Fall Haiku

Grade Levels: 2 - 6

Objectives

  • Students learn the syllable structure and mood of haiku poems by comparing the serenity of the autumn months with the peaceful rhythms of haiku poetry.

Materials

  • Samples of haiku poetry
  • Fresh leaves of various shapes and sizes
  • Crayons of fall colors
  • Thin paper, about 8 1/2" x 11"
  • Felt-tip pens
  • Sounds-of-nature music to inspire and set the tone

Procedures

  1. Discuss with students the requirements of a haiku poem – a three-line poem, the first line with five syllables, the second line with seven syllables, and the third line with five syllables. A haiku often illustrates some aspect of nature or tranquility. (Note: Beginners often try to evoke too many different ideas. A good rule is to have at least two concrete images, and no more than three.)
  2. Discuss with students the sounds and sights of fall. They can revolve around the leaves changing color, animals preparing for winter, or any other characteristic of the season.
  3. Write a sample haiku with the class.
  4. Next have students write their own haiku on lined paper. Sounds-of-nature background music can inspire descriptive writing.
  5. Students should then take the leaves and randomly place them under their thin paper.
  6. Using a crayon, have them make back-and-forth strokes over the objects; light pressure gives the best results.
  7. Students then write their haiku over their leaf paper with felt-tip pens or crayons.

Variation

Create landscapes with different textures for fields, mountains, and clouds. Write a different haiku describing each part of the scene as it relates to the fall season.

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