We are pleased to present these resources for teachers of all educational levels. The plans are offered as supplements to existing language arts curricula and as tools for teachers. They are designed to complement teachers’ current practices, and to integrate with lessons and concepts necessary not only to the meeting of educational goals but also to the appreciation of poetry. You’ll discover that they are well integrated with many other offerings which you can find on The Haiku Foundation website, making the creation of complete lessons simple and easily navigated.
The Kindergarten lesson plan is offered in a single section, which can be repeated multiple times. The plans for subsequent elementary grade pairs are offered in three sections: Awareness, Reading, and Writing. This overview for these first 10 plans will help you see in advance the scale and resources required to implement them. Plans for Junior and Senior High School are overviews of the kinds of resources that you may find and utilize on the THF site. Most of these formal lesson plans are by Jim Kacian, THF President; and Ellen Grace Olinger, Ed.D. They use resources that are available at The Haiku Foundation. Naturally the sections are all related; you can tailor any one of them to your specific teaching goals. All materials here are free for your use.
We will continue to add to this list, with lesson plans for college and adult education to follow.
We also offer a general introductory volume in The Haiku Foundation Digital Library, How to Haiku, by THF Founder and President Jim Kacian that you might find useful.
The Haiku Registry is a gallery of poets who have published English-language haiku or senryu in an edited journal, either in print or online.
1st–2nd Grade Lessons
- Haiku Awareness for Students in Grades 1–2
- Haiku Reading for Grades 1–2
- Haiku Writing for Grades 1-2
3rd–4th Grade Lessons
- Haiku Awareness for Students in Grades 3-4
- Haiku Reading for Grades 3-4
- Haiku Writing for Grades 3-4
5th–6th Grade Lessons
- Haiku Awareness for Students in Grades 5-6
- Haiku Reading for Grades 5-6
- Haiku Writing for Grades 5-6
Junior High School Grade Lessons
High School Grade Lessons
Lessons for Higher Education
- Haiku Introduction for Higher Education
- Juxtapositions 1.1
- Juxtapositions 2.1
- Juxtapositions 3.1
- How to Haiku 1
- How to Haiku 2
- How to Haiku 3
Lessons for All Ages
- Using Poems from the EarthRise Haiku Collaboration
- Using Poems from Book of the Week
- Using Poems from The Haiku Foundation Digital Library
Other Educational Plans
In addition to these formal, unified plans, we have also encouraged educators to share their approaches with us. Here are some of the offerings we’ve received.
These plans and worksheets are from Brad Bennett and are aimed primarily at 3rd and 4th graders:
- Lesson Plan for Grades 3-4
- Supplement 1: Contrasting Images
- Supplement 2: Surprise!
- Supplement 3: What Two Things
- Supplement 4: What When Where?
- Supplement 5: Which Season?
- Supplement 6: Which Senses?
Next we offer these several lesson plans by noted haiku teacher Tom Painting from his own unique perspective:
- What’s Lurking?
- How to Haiku Workshop #1
- Workshop on Kigo
- Haiku Challenge 1
- Haiku Challenge 2
- Haiku Challenge 3
- Haiku Challenge 4
We also offer these lesson plans for students of any age:
- Penny Harter’s Notes on Writing Haiku
- William J. Higginson’s Guidelines to Writing Haiku in English
- George Marsh’s Introduction to Reading and Writing Haiku, Invoking the Spirit of Bashô
And this report from Kala Ramesh, who has taught haiku in India for nearly a decade:
To which we add these additional “stories from the field” from a bevy of talented and experienced teachers, who share some of their best — and most frightening — moments with you, from the series “Teaching Stories.”
- Teaching Story 1
- Teaching Story 2
- Teaching Story 3
- Teaching Story 4
- Teaching Story 5
- Teaching Story 6
- Teaching Story 7
- Teaching Story 8
- Teaching Story 9
- Teaching Story 10
- Teaching Story 11
- Teaching Story 12
- Teaching Story 13
- Teaching Story 14
- Teaching Story 15
- Teaching Story 16
- Teaching Story 17
- Teaching Story 18
- Teaching Story 19
We also house many essays and articles on the praxis of haiku, some of which you will find in our scholarly journal Juxtapositions, some in our Online Digital Essay Library, and some here, such as Martin Berner’s comments:
Finally, we offer a host of excellent examples of contemporary haiku via The Haiku Foundation’s Digital Library, and especially through collections and anthologies which have been used in the preparation of these lessons. The collection Haiku Theses, Dissertations and Bibliographies might be especially helpful.
We recommend Haiku in English: The First Hundred Years, edited by Foundation president Jim Kacian with Allan Burns and Philip Rowland, as the definitive word on how haiku has evolved in English, and the Foundation’s publication Montage: The Book, edited by Allan Burns, as the premier themed
collection available in the language. In addition, you’ll find these volumes of note in the Digital Library
- The Red Moon Anthology of English Language Haiku 1996
- The Red Moon Anthology of English Language Haiku 1997
- A New Resonance 1: Emerging Voices in English-Language Haiku
to which we will be adding as time goes along.
We welcome your input, both as responses to our specific lesson plans as well as poems generated from them for exhibit on this site. We hope this page will soon be thronging with examples of poems written by your students with your help. When you submit your students’ poems please be sure to include the poet’s name, grade, age, as well as permission to reprint from his or her parent or guardian (an email authorizing the use of such material is sufficient).
We also welcome your own experiences in teaching this material and any other haiku teaching experiences—anecdotes, success stories, or anything else you feel is worthwhile to share. We will include the most appropriate of these here on the Education Wall to share with others.
All submissions of poems, stories and lesson plans should be sent via the Contact page.
We hope, with time, that this page will become an interactive resource for teachers of all grade levels who have the desire to teach haiku to their students, and want to go deeper than the populist notion that haiku is “anything written in 5-7-5.” We look forward to working with you to help this site meet your needs.