Mighty Metaphors

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SWBAT write and identify metaphors in text and in poetry.

Big Idea

With a grasp on similes it is now time to understand metaphors. Sometimes students get the two confused and this lesson helps them practice the differences.

Defining Metaphor

5 minutes

Similes and metaphors are very similar and often students get the two confused. I want to start the lesson with a clear definition that shows how it is different than a simile. With my definition I want to include good examples that will help them to understand a metaphor better.

I begin by writing "metaphor" on the white board. I then explain that whenever I see this word it makes me think of a special kind of Pokemon (the little animal cards/ cartoon kids are into). With a statement like this I catch their attention and we talk about what a cool word it is. I then ask if anyone knows what the word actually means.

One student explains that they know it relates to poems a lot and that it also is used with the word simile. I go off what this student says and review a smilie with the class. I read and write a metaphor on the board, "The boy's stomach is a bottomless pit." I turn this metaphor into a simile and write in underneath the metaphor, "The boy's stomach is like a bottomless pit." We then discuss how they are different. 

As we discuss this I reinforce that we are still comparing two things. I also help prompt the class to realizing that a simile uses the word is or like. We then create a working definition centered on it being a comparison of two things that are not normally used together and does not compare with like or as. 

Metaphor Meanings and Examples

10 minutes

To practice reading and interpreting metaphors we are going to use our white boards. We will start with guided practice on our white boards. I start by reading, "Mr. Garcia is the glue that holds our school together." I have students write on their board what two things are being compared. I walk around and look at each board and take note of what is being compared. 

I ask the class to show me their boards, and check those I might not have gotten to. I then read another metaphor, "the lava was a blanket of fire." I then have them write what is being compared and have them show me again. 

After these two the majority of the class has the concept and I have made note of who I might need to help further. If students need some more independent practice, I found this worksheet, on finding metaphors, that I will use if needed for reteaching purposes.