Haiku Thinking

I’ve found writing a haiku a day has helped me this winter. It has turned me away from confusion and towards hope and inspiration. It has gotten me to notice, to see the value in small, and to focus on what matters. Millions of thank yous to Mary Lee Hahn for her wisdom in starting the #haikuforhealing challenge.

Of course, I couldn’t help but think of how a classroom might benefit from haiku thinking; practices that mirror some haiku attributes.

Haikus are predictable structures.
As the new year starts, I want to re-establish a daily and weekly arc of predictability that allows each student to participate knowing what’s expected.  Kids need predictable. No surprises. That empowers.

Haikus are small and focused.
It’s time to take the predictable structure to small, focused, predictable practice centered in meaningful texts (read aloud, articles of the week and podcasts) and designed to build and strengthen inferential skills necessary for meaning making.

Haikus are purposeful — they convey simple messages.
I want students to walk out of the classroom able to tackle troubles they encounter as they read. I want them to be able to write in ways that in fact, communicate what they want and believe.

small daily doses
purposeful predictable 
slowly they add up 


Celebrate: Traveling Mercies Haiku

This week, I celebrate haiku style.
I celebrate the time and effort it takes to be with loved ones.
Happy Holidays.


Traveling home clouds
dancing backlit characters
passing performers.

Dragons and bunnies
fight for daylight remnants
adapting vapors.

Distant sun rays point toward
sheltered harbor — a respite
for the next journey.

“…most of the time, all you have is the moment, and the imperfect love of the people around you.”  — Anne Lamott, Traveling Mercies

Thank you, Ruth Ayers, for encouraging celebrations each week at Discover, Play, Build.