Metaphor Unit Poems

Grade Levels: 5 - 8

Objectives

  • Students will define and recognize metaphors.
  • Students will write poems using metaphors.

Procedures

  1. Prewriting:

    1. Write a metaphor on the blackboard:

      A caterpillar is an upholstered worm. (anonymous)

    2. Define metaphor. The metaphor is first cousin to the simile. Like the simile, it compares two objects but does not use like or as or than.

      Simile: Her cheeks are like polished apples.

      Metaphor: Her cheeks are polished apples.

    3. Place the following sentences on the blackboard and ask students to complete each metaphor:

      My legs were ___________________ as I raced for the tape. (rubber bands?)

      Faced with failure, I felt my heart become a (an) __________________. (jackhammer?)

      As the audience listened in shocked silence, my fingers became ___________________, stumbling over the ivory. (ice cubes?)

      My feet were _____________________ as I set out to investigate the peculiar noises coming from the attic. (cement blocks?)

  2. Ask students to write a metaphor for their own family.

    1. Distribute Sample Metaphor Poems or read them to the students.

    2. Have students brainstorm for a list of units on the blackboard. For example, groceries, dishes, silverware, drawers, clothes, tools, chairs, furniture, books, buildings, closets, shoes or boots, windows.

  3. Drafting:

    1. Ask students to pick a particular unit and write a metaphor for their own family that includes every family member as an element in the unit.

  4. Revising and Presenting:

    1. Confer individually with students.

    2. When all students have completed the poem and have written a final draft on unlined paper, have them take turns or volunteer to read aloud before turning in a final copy.

Excerpted from Writing Process Activities Kit.

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