I begin the lesson by activating prior knowledge by writing "Dad was Mad" and asking for student responses to the phrase. I then write "My Dad was a Raging Inferno Fire burning everything in his path as he moved towards my room." and then ask for their responses to this phrase. I inserted pictures to use if your students do not make the vocabulary or visual connections to the comparisons.
I ask - Was dad angry in both sentences? What made you react differently to the second sentence? What picture did it create in your mind? Yeah - they got that the second made him seem so much more angry than the first! They get the purpose and value of making comparisons so now we can start the lesson.
I introduce that today you are going to create metaphor poems using our own descriptive comparisons and then get the opportunity to share them with our audience using your expressive creativity.
We have only described the comparisons and created pictures of metaphors so I realize that they will need to scaffold the learning to write their own - or at least ones that offer comparative descriptions that are more than 3-5 words long.
So I introduced the comparisons and project the How do Metaphors Influence Readers sheet on the board. We read through them to build understanding of the deeper visual and emotional reaction metaphors can make when writing. I emphasize and point out the use of adjectives to further explain a comparison being made because this is where I want them to be for the independent poem work. I leave the chart projected on the board for reference.
I then pass out the Thinking Metaphorically and the My Metaphor Poem worksheets. I copy them back to back because I don't want students to begin the back side until we have reviewed and brainstormed ideas.
We review the worksheet and the examples. We brainstorm nouns that can be used for the topic of their poems, and adjective description words. With this class I handed out a List-of-Descriptive-Adjectives on the tables because I have so many ELL and struggling learners and wanted to give them support so they could create more descriptive comparisons. I challenged them to add more than one adjective to their comparisons and to try to reverse at least one of their sentences. We reviewed this with the sentence from the chart "Her hair was a waterfall" to "A sparkling waterfall of glistening hair fell down her slender back".
I have them complete the first section of their planning worksheet and then partner them up to share their topic and descriptive words and to build stronger descriptive sentences with their peer's advice.
I set a timer for this to keep them on task and circulate to check for difficulties and ensure all are giving peer support.
After the sharing they are really confident in their writing so they can't wait to start on their final poem and illustration. I pass out the My metaphor final poem worksheet and give them the expectations for neatness and illustrations after writing - and then set a timer for 20 minutes.
I give them more time on this for two reasons - first I want them to give effort to their illustrations because we are working on how pictures can influence a readers and I want to bring this question up in my close. Secondly, we have had a long week of work and they need a little time just to have fun and draw so that they have enough mental energy to continue working for the remainder of the day.
I walk around and watch but don't offer to much interference (spelling, format and neatness are my focus points) because they've got their planning already done and are really only transferring their work to a new worksheet.
When the timer signals I have them come together and the fun time begins. They love to share their poems so I have them pair share their poems first by calling partnered numbers and giving them two minutes to share. I listen in here because I want to have a strong reader, a struggling but successful reader and an ELL or special needs reader come up later to share but need to hear who has done good work in each category.
I then pull sticks (random for the extra time, but selected for the three I want to highlight) and have them share their poems in front of the class. I remind them that poetry is read with expression so that not only the authors words, but tone and illustrations influence the audience it is being shared with.
After each student shares I ask "what comparison was being made?" "how did their poem make you feel?" "what influence did their expression and illustration have on you?"
This takes more time to discuss but it builds understanding and gives students a focus for while they are listening to improve their connection to the poems and metaphors being shared.