Baltimore City Public Schools (BCPS) announced an extension of their haiku contest, Friday.

Schools in Baltimore have been closed in response to the global coronavirus outbreak (COVID-19). 

At the moment, BCPS will be closed from March 16 through March 27, giving students time to continue to foster and develop their creativity outside the structure of school and classroom.

Dr. Alice G. Pinderhughes Administrative Headquarters, Baltimore City Public Schools (Image courtesy Wikimedia Commons/Photo by Groupuscule)

Haiku, Japanese very short form poetry, has been defined by BCPS as three lines in a 5-7-5 syllable pattern. 

Jayla Clovis’s winning 2019 entry reads:

Warmth in the kitchen/

Brown sugar, secrets and love/

Making Mom’s cookies

BCPS is asking that this year’s submissions work on the theme “hero,” and are invited to use creativity in their imagery and vocabulary.

The 2020 Haiku Contest Form invites students to apply directly at the BCPS website. 

Submissions must clearly indicate the poet’s full name, school name, grade level, and the full name and email of the poet’s English Language Arts teacher.

When classes resume, the contest deadline will be announced, giving students five more school days to complete and enter their submissions. The deadline will be 4:45 p.m. on the fifith day.

Elementary, Middle and High school winners will receive prize packages including gifts from The Ivy Bookshop, Ukazoo Books, and game tickets from the Baltimore Orioles.

Last year’s contest was a record setter, wherein BCPS received 2,223 submissions from 105 schools.