Promote Haiku During National Literacy Awareness Month

September is National Literacy Awareness Month. I learned long ago, when I was asked to teach haiku to public school students, that haiku and senryu were great ways to  not only to enrich their vocabulary, but to get them reading and writing.

Many students have short attention spans, and reading or writing brief things is a way that isn’t daunting to get them interested in literacy. I have taught haiku and senryu to at risk students, too, and I was delighted by the interesting thoughts and imaginative expression of these junior high and high school students in writing them. They were particularly intrigued with senryu and  how clever it allowed them to be with short takes on human nature and humor.

In fact, being able to tweet haiku and senryu appeals to students and adults alike, no matter what abilities they have with the written word.

As haikuists, we can work to get haiku and senryu noticed, taking every opportunity to link them to a celebratory month, not only to National Poetry Month in April. Think about doing a Google search and coming up with celebratory months or even special days  during which haiku and senryu can be promoted. Always be looking for these opportunities, particularly if you like to teach, give workshops, or do readings.

Copyright 2017 by Charlotte Digregorio.


About Charlotte Digregorio

I publish books. I have marketed and/or published 55 titles. These books are sold in 46 countries to bookstores, libraries, universities, professional organizations, government agencies, and book clubs. I am also the author of five non-fiction books: Haiku and Senryu: A Simple Guide for All; Everything You Need to Know About Nursing Homes; You Can Be A Columnist; Beginners' Guide to Writing & Selling Quality Features; and Your Original Personal Ad. The first four books have been adopted as supplemental texts at universities throughout the U.S., Canada, India, Pakistan, and Catalonia. They are sold in 43 countries, and are displayed in major metropolitan cultural centers. These books have been reviewed, recommended, and praised by hundreds of critics, librarians, and professors worldwide. I am also the author of a poetry collection: "Shadows of Seasons: Selected Haiku and Senryu." Two of my books have been Featured Selections of Writer's Digest Book Club. I am regularly interviewed by major print, radio, and television organizations throughout the U.S. I have signed books at libraries, chain bookstores, and university bookstores. I was recently nominated for a Pushcart Prize in poetry. I have won thirty-three poetry awards. I have been nominated and listed in "The International Authors and Writers Who's Who" in Cambridge, England and in the "Who's Who In Writers, Editors & Poets U.S./Canada." I am an internationally-published haiku, senryu, tanka, kyoka, haibun, free verse, acrostic, cinquain, etheree, and sestina poet. My poetry has been translated into six languages, and I have done poetry readings at a variety of bookstores, libraries, art centers, cafes, tea houses, and galleries. My poetry has been displayed at supermarkets, art galleries, libraries, apparel and wine shops, banks, botanic gardens, restaurants, and on public transit. I've been interviewed on cable television about my poetry. I also hosted my own radio program, "Poetry Beat," on public broadcasting. My poetry has been featured on several library web sites including those of Shreve Memorial Library in Louisiana and Cornell University's Mann Library. My background includes positions as a feature editor and columnist at daily newspapers and as a magazine editor. I have been a public relations director for a non-profit organization. I was also self-employed as a communications/public relations/marketing consultant with 111 clients in 16 states. In other professional areas, I have been on university faculties, teaching French, Italian, and Writing. I regularly give special lectures and workshops on publishing, journalism, publicity, poetry, and creativity to business and professional groups, and to those at writer's conferences, universities, literary festivals, non-profit organizations, and to libraries. I have been a writer-in-residence at universities. There have been about 400 articles written about me in the media. I have served on the Boards of writers and publishers organizations. My positions have included Board Secretary of the Northwest Association of Book Publishers. I served for five years as Midwest Regional Coordinator of The Haiku Society of America. Currently, I am Second Vice President of the Haiku Society.
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4 Responses to Promote Haiku During National Literacy Awareness Month

  1. Thank you Charlotte
    for this interesting article.
    Tomorrow, I’ll share it in my blog.
    Congrats for your work.

  2. Paul Beech says:

    Hi Charlotte, I’m all on for promoting haiku, senryu and related forms.

    My partner Maureen and I attended the annual Callander Poetry Weekend in Scotland at the beginning of September (review on my blog, Grandy’s Landing) and my reading included ‘Curlew Sunset’ (my sequence poem published in Failed Haiku last month), ‘Cherry Bakewells’ (my haibun published along with a senryu in this month’s Failed Haiku) plus a newly written haibun.

    I also had the great pleasure of meeting Gerald England for the first time at Callander. It was his book ‘The Art of Haiku 2000’, which I read two or three years ago, that really showed me the way with traditional Japanese-style poetry. Of course your wonderful Daily Haiku and Alan Summers’ Haikutec’s Weblog have been an inspiration since.

    Viva le haiku!

    Very best wishes,


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