Creative Writing in the EFL Classroom/Teaching Ideas/Raising Students' Awareness of Textualization through the use of mini sagas and haiku poems

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Developing students’ awareness of textuality[edit]

Two kinds of text types: haiku poems and mini sagas, are suitable as texts with potential to raise the students' textuality.

  • Criteria for the state of being a text


What makes a series of sentences or utterances a text? Or Criteria for Textuality

  1. They must make sense. (Sentences must be coherent.)
  2. They must have a clear communicative purpose. (Function เช่น To thank someone)
  3. They must be well-formed.
  4. They must hang together. (They must be cohesive.)
  5. They must be a recognizable text type. เช่น Ads, Fables, Letters, Notes, Textbooks, Haikus, etc.

The direct way is to have students memorize thse criteria, but it may not be the best way to do. Alternatively, EFL teachers can use haikus and mini sagas to help them develop their awareness of these qualities.



  • What is a haiku poem?

A haiku poem is a syllabic poem of three lines. The first line must have 5 syllables, the second 7, and the third 5.

For example


     The nature of life
     Flashing brightly then fading
     Like a shooting star
     Lin Lihua, China)


Here's another example:

  Sitting in the park
  The blind man waiting
  Alone, in the rain
  
  • What is a mini saga?

A mini saga is a very short story. It must contain exactly 50 words.

For example:

      Stronger
      
      Song is my friend. He thought he was faster than me in everything. One day, we
      visited  a brothel. He said he needed no protection. Four years later he died of HIV.
      After the cremation, I threw his ashes into a river. I know he is always faster than
      me.    
      
      (Yongyuth Khamkhong)


Here's another mini saga:

  A Banana Grower
  
  While visiting a small village along the Thai-Myanmar border province of Kanchanaburi,  
  Thongdee helped a Karen man from going to jail. The acquitted man gave him a big plot of
  land. The man helped him plant bananas. The plantation was successful; he quit his job and
  became a banana grower.
  
   (Janpha Thadphoothon)