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Exploring haikuBookmark

Learning area: English
Year level: Year 7
Country: Japan
General capability:

The word 'haiku' spelled in Japanese kanji characters'Haiku' spelled in Japanese kanji

This learning sequence explores the structure and examples of Japanese haiku poetry.

Students consider how compressed language can produce dramatic and unexpected effects by beginning with an interactive simulated writing experience and then deeper study of both classic and contemporary haiku.


Haiku is a popular form of Japanese poetry. If you do a quick Google search, you will find more than 23 million pages on this topic.

  1. Use the Pseudo–haiku creator to discover the main elements of haiku. Begin this activity with an exploration of this website. Explore the drop-down fields to create a haiku. Share your creation to ensure that others understand it.
  2. After creating your own 'pseudo-haiku,' answer the following questions:
    • What are they about?
    • What are their main parts?
    • How are they structured?
  3. Share your answers as a class then check the 'Features of Haiku' on the Definition of haiku. Discuss the key features of haiku so that the class has a shared understanding.


  1. It's time to write! Now that you have created a 'pseudo-haiku' and have developed an understanding of the main features of this Japanese literary form, it's time for you to write your own. Use the link Teach Your Children How to Write Haiku to support this process.
  2. Create a haiku that has included most of the main features common to this literary form. Read Experience the World Precisely to explore how an excellent haiku works.
  3. Now it's time to create an illustrated version of your haiku. 

Use Pixlr Express or your own software to create your graphic haiku poster. Find a background image such as examples for 'Spring' or search your own topic through Google or Creative Commons Flickr search. Be sure to only download images available for re-use and then credit the original photographer on your poster.


Haiku is a great example of 'compressed language.' By writing a haiku you were forced to experiment with using only a few words to bring a scene and feelings to life.

What did you learn about the power of language or your own abilities as a writer? In your learning portfolio, write a reflective paragraph on this learning experience.

It is recommended that teachers preview websites and videos to ensure they are suitable for their students before they are used in class. Content accessed via these links is not owned or controlled by Asia Education Foundation and is subject to the terms of use of the associated website.


Haiku image – by AEF

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