Teaching Poetry in an English Workshop–Sakhnin, Israel, Day Three

R-L, Sara and Adan

R-L, Sara and Adan

Today, we talked about Haiku and looked at sample poems. All told me they had never heard of the concept. I had the students come to the board and mark the syllables as they counted them out. In Arabic, the word for syllables is mktua, so they were familiar with the concept, though many did not know the word in English. I quickly realized how valuable an English lesson it is for them to count out the syllables in the English words. I was also impressed that they were very good at hearing them.

It seemed it was a little easier for them to write Haiku than other types

L-R Shadin and Donia

L-R Shadin and Donia

of poetry since it is shorter. I told them that usually Haiku does not rhyme and that they should release themselves from the need to do so. Rhyming is something they have imposed upon themselves, even though I have encouraged them to not feel compelled to rhyme. I’ve tried to impress upon them that contemporary poetry written in English does not always rhyme.

Waterfalls are fresh.
A lot of water falling
as cold as the ice.

— Raya, 8th grade

The night, it is black.
Day is blue, but it always
leads me back to you.

–Donia , 9th grad

It’s a magic trick
about what the nature makes
to a human heart

–Arwa, 9th grade

Poem written by Shadin

Poem written by Shadin



This entry was posted in Craft in Poetry, Teaching Poetry, Uncategorized, Writing Poetry and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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