Poetry and Figurative Language Ideas Galore! - Ideas By Jivey: For the Classroom

Poetry and Figurative Language Ideas Galore!

Poetry is just so fun to teach. I hope you share the love! Next Wednesday, you can come back and link up to Workshop Wednesday to share how you teach poetry in Writing Workshop (or just get more ideas from others)... 
...but for now, I wanted to give you some ideas of things I've done and LOVE!

I'm sure you know, figurative language is a huge part of poetry, so I spend time working on figurative language over the course of the entire year in reading mostly (and making them incorporate it into writing, especially with our mentor sentences), so that by the time we get to April for Poetry Month, we can really dive in! And now that Spring is upon us, it'll be time to have a figurative language picnic again!!

Idioms and puns are some of the hardest things to teach kids, in my opinion, because they take everything so literally... so we really spend time looking at as many idioms and puns as we can. Two books I love to use are by Tedd Arnold:
I also love to use the chapter book, Punished, as a read-aloud so we can talk about all the puns in the book as we go:
The kids start incorporating these types of figurative language into their writing and conversation. They also love to tell me "you're so punny!" if I make a groan-worthy remark. :o)

Check out these two products that your kiddos will love! The second product is even free! :)
This product includes 30 idioms with full color posters, matching games, interactive notebook activities, and assessments. It would be an excellent product to use to start off the year and introduce one or two idioms a week!
The interactive notebook activities are organized so that the students have to find the similarities among them- for example, these four had to deal with being scared or nervous.

And if your kids (or you) are tired of boring matching games, check out this fun post where I shared how to liven up those games! My kids loved playing with the idiom matches that are included in my unit.

This next product is FREE and one my kids LOVE because we make a class book!
First, I show them this video (song featured in Dumbo):
Then, they each get a page that they illustrate to show "the real thing" and the punny phrase. (For example, a housefly and a house fly: they would draw the insect, but also a house with wings, flying in the clouds!)

Have fun teaching everyone!


  1. We used More Parts and Even More Parts last week when learning about idioms. We are currently in love with idioms. I think I will have to check out your task card activity - I would like to change things up a bit next week. Have a great, relaxing weekend!

  2. Great deal on the poetry set! I love the books you suggested too. Thanks :)

  3. So many good ideas in this post! One of my favorite units to teach is poetry! I always finish up our poetry unit on Valentine's Day, and my students perform their poems for parents and guests. It is a great way to celebrate Valentine's!

  4. I love this post so much that I want to eat it up at your Figurative Language picnic! XO
    Rockin' and Lovin' Learnin'


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