Haiku for Kindergarteners

Tomorrow I’m going to Lydia’s kindergarten class to talk a little about poetry.  Her teacher is pretty stinkin’ awesome at everything, but one of the things I love is that the kids typically have a poem homework assignment each week where they read and analyze the poem for syllables, sounds, and rhymes.  Since it’s National Poetry Month, I thought it might be fun to finally make an appearance in Lydia’s class.  So tomorrow, I’m going to talk about haiku.

For those who don’t know, haiku are cute little poems that do not have to rhyme.  They are three lines long – the first line has five syllables, the second has seven, and the last has five.  My plan is to start with a haiku, count each line’s syllables and then explain the “rules” of haiku and talk about its origin.  Then, I am going to read a few more haiku and let the students pick an activity – they can illustrate one of the haiku, copy the haiku, or try to write their own haiku… or, if her teacher has some other ideas, something else entirely.

So for my poem-a-day today, I wrote a few haiku that I think the kids could relate to or illustrate.  I don’t usually write haiku – I prefer longer poem forms – but like the limerick project, I really enjoyed this little exercise.  It’s also been a good break from longer, more stretching poems.  And, I have a few ideas I’m excited to jump into tomorrow night to continue the poem-a-day challenge.

Haiku for Kindergarteners
Cherry blossoms pop;
the sidewalk is littered white
with petals like snow.
I walked with my friend
through the woods, sunbeam halos
landing on our heads.
In the bright green field,
yellow dandelions wave.
Little girls wave back.
Playground stairs and slides,
cowboys and Indians chase
princesses and queens.
Grapes and bananas,
peanut butter sandwiches,
lunch of champions!

Published by Sarah M. Wells

Sarah M. Wells is the author of The Family Bible Devotional: Stories from the Gospels to Help Kids and Parents Love God and Love Others (2022), American Honey: A Field Guide to Resisting Temptation (2021), Between the Heron and the Moss (2020), The Family Bible Devotional: Stories from the Bible to Help Kids and Parents Engage and Love Scripture (2018), Pruning Burning Bushes (2012), and a chapbook of poems, Acquiesce, winner of the 2008 Starting Gate Award through Finishing Line Press (2009). Sarah's work has been honored with four Pushcart Prize nominations, and her essays have appeared in the notable essays list in the Best American Essays 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2017, and 2018. Sarah is the recipient of a 2018 Individual Excellence Award from the Ohio Arts Council. She resides in Ashland, Ohio with her husband and three children.

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