Figurative language is one of my favorite topics to teach! It’s one of those units that pushes students to dive deep and use their analytical thinking skills. While I may love teaching this topic, I realize not every teacher shares my same enthusiasm. I’m hoping that by breaking down the process and sharing some of my favorite resources, teaching nonliteral language can become something teachers look forward to.
1. When Teaching Figurative Language, Start Out of Context.
To accomplish this part of the lesson, I may simply write a phrase on the board and ask my students which type it is. Or, I may write an expression and ask them how we could “morph” it into a specific type.
Another great activity is to use a sorting game. This will give students enough practice in identifying each type of nonliteral language that they should be ready to move on.
What type of figurative language is being used?
Identify the figurative language being used?
2. Deeper Thinking with In-Context Learning
Alliteration – The Long, Long Letter
3. Teaching Figurative Language through Poetry
My favorite way to teach figurative language is through poetry. Sometimes these phrases can get lost in stories, whereas with poetry, it tends to pop out and smack you in the face. Also, it is very easy to “dig deep” and get students to sharpen their skills.
4. Independent Practice