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Survey says . . . the THF Education Wall

Every September the Board of Directors and Associates of The Haiku Foundation are sent a survey. Their responses help to guide our growth and direction. We’d like to broaden our input, and so we’ll be asking you to respond to a series of questions, one per week, over the next half-year. Your replies will be weighed in our assessment of our performance.

Today’s question: Education

The Education Wall is now available online. Ellen Olinger, haiku poet and much honored professional teacher, has designed a platform in grade bundles 1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 7-8, high school and college, adult. Next aspect is outreach to teachers. We are seeking a Chair for the Education Committee.

Please assess how well The Haiku Foundation is delivering on this topic. Indicate your assessment of our performance to date by choosing one of the options:






Please feel free to add additional comments. Thank you in advance for your consideration, and for helping us make The Haiku Foundation a better resource.

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. Ellen, this is an absolute treasure. I’m grateful to you, to Tom Painting, and to the other poets whose invaluable guidance is so freely shared here. The care and thought that have gone into this ever-evolving project is obvious and impressive.

    A deep bow,

  2. Thanks, Jim, for this post.

    For new readers at THF: When I volunteered to help with education two years ago, Jim Kacian shared his vision for the Ed Wall. We worked on this project for over a year before the Ed Wall was published. It includes the poems of many people, since Montage, edited by Allan Burns, is the textbook for several of the plans. We also link to the Haiku Registry, Video Archive, library, etc. Tom Painting and others have added more work to the Ed Wall, and I am learning from them.

    When I wrote the elementary plans, in consultation with Jim and THF Board, I presumed no prior knowledge of haiku – for teachers and students alike. So we have different lessons for Awareness, Reading and Writing haiku. Because of how Montage is organized, the lessons also show how haiku can be a part of science and history lessons, for example. The Foreword to Montage by Peggy Willis Lyles is also written from the viewpoint of a teacher and is excellent.

    Because the Ed Wall has grown so well, I am currently rereading the content. My next goal is to create a curriculum overview, so teachers, parents, etc. can see the gentle progression of skills and where haiku lessons and subject areas may be taught together. I think of a teacher on break for 10 minutes, or looking at our work after grading papers for a few hours.

    My 20 year career was in special education – from the early years as a young teacher after the federal mandate was passed in the US (long ago now), to teacher training in Chicago after graduate work at NIU. I see the child who wants to learn but not be called on to read aloud in front of peers. Or who can shine with the help of a peer tutor or parent volunteer – or even just a little more time to work. And also the student who is ready to write earlier, who needs more challenge. So we include adaptations for the lessons, knowing the parents and teachers know what is best. Our goal is to serve them and help a new generation find the wonder of poetry, especially haiku.

    I don’t have the scholarship with haiku that many here have achieved – my dissertation was based on the effective instruction literature. So this is truly collaboration. And as Jim said, we are seeking a Chair for the Education Committee. Jim is the Editor for the Ed Wall.

    Always a work-in-progress!

    Thanks for reading and support,


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