Hot Tips & Topics

We are dedicated to providing you with a comprehensive collection of relevant and up-to-date K-12 education news and editorials. For teachers, by teachers.

Simile Strings: A Lesson in Figurative Language

Methods & Management for Middle School

 

Simile Strings: A Lesson in Figurative LanguageIn trying to teach figurative language, I usually run into the problem of metaphor. Middle school students have a horrible time wrapping their heads around metaphors, much less the DIFFICULT assignment of understanding extended metaphors.

Metaphors are so abstract that their brains have a hard time processing them, so I’ve decided to start with something I call simile strings.

Introducing Simile Strings

I define a simile string as several similes all related to one topic.  These are much like an extended metaphor, but a little easier because kids can still rely on “like” or “as” which, for some reason, makes them more comfortable.

Related Articles
High school students exiting the school throwing papers in the air.
With the school year coming to a close, providing closure for students is...
Young girl smiling and wearing headphones while using a laptop.
Delivering quality education to students through eLearning can be difficult....
Young girl writing notes while looking at a laptop with open books around her.
With the move to eLearning, educators must find creative ways to keep student...
Two young boys reading a book together in their elementary classroom.
Differentiated literacy instruction is vital in elementary classrooms to reach...
Young boy working at a table listening to a video lesson with his teacher and classmates.
Remote learning can make assessment of student learning more difficult but not...

To introduce the concept of simile strings, I use the following two songs because they use simile strings in their choruses:

 

 

 

Simile String Assignment

I then put the kids to work on creating their own simile strings with these specifications:

  • One Topic (love, school, mom ... anything as long as it is ONE topic)
  • 5 similes about that topic
  • A finished product using Picnik to graphically illustrate their strings

Check out my blog post to learn how I use Picnik in the classroom.

What tips do you have for teaching figurative language? Share in the comments section!

Today's Poll

Which types of articles would you like to see from us in 2020?
Classroom Management
14%
Classroom Activities/Games
29%
Teaching Strategies
27%
Technology in the Classroom
23%
Professional Development
7%
Total votes: 257