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Creating and Presenting Haiku With Kid Pix

Teacher Lesson





  • Arts & Humanities:
    Language Arts
  • Education & Technology






Brief Description

Students learn about the history and characteristics of haiku poetry and use Kid Pix to present original haiku.






  • learn about the history and characteristics of haiku.
  • correctly answer questions about haiku.
  • view samples of haiku.
  • create an original haiku using general haiku characteristic guidelines.
  • use Kid Pix to type and illustrate their haiku.



haiku, Kid Pix, Japan, poem, poetry



Materials Needed


  • computer with Internet access (optional)
  • Kid Pix and Kid Pix slide show software
  • Cool Melons -- Turn to Frogs! The Life and Poems of Issa by Matthew Gollub
  • information about haiku history and characteristics (see below)
  • haiku samples
  • Internet Resources
    Among the Internet resources you might use for this activity are the following:


Lesson Plan


Lesson One

  • Read aloud the book Cool Melons -- Turn to Frogs! The Life and Poems of Issa, by Matthew Gollub.
  • Have students reread some of the 33 haiku from the book. Ask students to look for similarities and differences among the poems. Have them compare their observations of haiku to traditional poetry.
  • Discuss history and characteristics of haiku.

Haiku History

The haiku form was developed in Japan and later became popular in the United States. Haiku is the shortest form of poetry in Japan. It tells a story or suggests a mental picture of something that happens in nature. Many descriptive words are used in haiku. The modern form of haiku dates from the 1890s and developed from earlier forms of poetry, hokku and haikai. The great Japanese master of haiku was Matsuo Basho (1644-1694). The name Basho means "banana tree" and was adopted by the poet when he moved into a hut located next to a banana tree.


General Characteristic Guidelines for Haiku

Haiku consists of 17 syllables and usually three lines. There are five syllables in the first line, seven in the second, and five in the third. The lines do not rhyme. Each haiku must contain a kigo, or season word, that indicates the season in which the haiku is set. For example, cherry blossoms indicate spring, snow indicates winter, and mosquitoes indicate summer, but the season word isn't always that obvious. The poem contains a "cutting" or division between two contrasting parts. In English, the first or second line usually ends with a colon or long dash to indicate this cutting. In writing haiku, contemplate nature and the present moment. Use verbs in the present tense, and choose each word very carefully.

To assess student understanding of haiku, elicit student responses to the following questions:

  • In what country did haiku originate? (Japan)
  • What year does the modern form of haiku date from? (1890s)
  • What is the usual subject of haiku? (nature)
  • How many syllables does a haiku have? (17)
  • How many lines does a haiku usually have? (three)
  • How many syllables should each line have? (first -- 5, second -- 7, third -- 5)
  • What verb tense should you use when writing haiku? (present)
  • Does haiku rhyme? (no)

Next, have students close their eyes and imagine themselves walking through the woods, lying in the grass, walking through a field, etc. Create on the board a list of how words and expressions the students are feeling about the nature that surrounds them.

Show students examples of haiku and use a computer projector to demonstrate writing haiku, using the Create Your Own Haiku Web resource (see Internet Resources above).

Finally, have students write their own haiku.


Lesson Two

  • Have students type and illustrate their haiku on the computer, using Kid Pix.
  • After the students create their haiku illustrations in Kid Pix, the teacher can combine the slides into one class haiku presentation, using a Kid Pix slide show. 
  • Show presentation to students. Run the presentation for parents at an open house or other school event.

Extension Activity: Print the Kid Pix presentation, and make a class book of haiku for everyone to enjoy. The class book could be sent home with a different child each day to share with his or her family.




Grade students on class participation and appropriate application of haiku guidelines.


Lesson Plan Source


Adapted from Professional Development



Submitted By


Submitted by Denise Stumpf, Muhlenberg Elementary Center, Laureldale, Pa., Penn State University

Teachers have permission to copy this page for use in their classrooms.


Originally published 03/29/2002
Linnks last updated 03/30/2015


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