Lesson Plan

Haiku Syllables

Have your students stretch their creativity with this lesson that teaches them about haikus and has them practice their syllable counting.
View aligned standards

Talk about poems and haikus in this lesson about poetry writing! In the Haiku Syllables lesson plan, first graders and second graders go over some of the basics of poetry writing: word structure and syllables. First, they will go over what makes a poem a haiku. Then, they will use the 5-7-5 syllable pattern of haikus to make their own poem about an animal that they like. It’s a great way to practice recognizing syllables in their writing and building up their reading skills.

Learning Objectives

Students will be able to demonstrate their understanding of spoken words, syllables and sounds using haikus.


(15 minutes)
  • Introduce students to the book, Hi, Koo: A Year of Seasons.
  • Read the definition of haikus inside the book.
  • Explain that like poems that rhyme have a structure, haikus do as well. They are made up of three lines.
  • In the first line they have five syllables, not necessarily five words, but five syllables. The middle line has seven syllables and the last line has five syllables.
  • Explain that haikus are traditionally written about nature and that they originated in Japan. Tell your students that because of the language difference, they often do not translate into other languages in the correct 5-7-5 syllable pattern.
  • Practice counting the syllables in a few practice words one at a time so students can see how one word can have more than one syllable.
  • Read the story Hi, Koo: A Year of Seasons.