What is Figurative Language?

A Flocabulary Song & Lesson Plan

Check out the lyrics and more.

Nobody wants to read boring sentences. So every writer from Charles Dickens to Lupe Fiasco uses a technique that makes their words jump off the page. They use figurative language. Figurative language means that the words you use don’t have their literal meaning, but instead are meant to be imaginative, vivid and evocative. So what is figurative language? Simply, it makes writing more interesting.

Our new, free figurative language song covers 11 common types of figurative language, from metaphor and simile to juxtaposition and onomatopoeia. This lesson plan uses the song as a jumping off point to become skilled in figurative language.

Figurative Language Lesson Plan

Materials: Speakers to play figurative language song, lyrics (printed or projected), Flocabulary figurative language worksheets

1. Listen to Flocabulary’s figurative language song, “Wordplay,” with your class. Tell students that the song defines 11 types of figurative language, as well as giving examples of each. We recommend that you focus on no more than five terms per lesson, to give students time to review each term in depth.

2. After the song has played, review the terms you’ll be focusing on in the lesson by clicking on the lyrics. Ask students to record the term definitions in their Figurative Language Notes chart. Ask students to identify the usage of the figurative language in the lyrics and record that in the chart, too.

You can find more examples of each type of figurative language here:
Alliteration
Allusion
Assonance
Extended metaphor
Juxtaposition
Metonymy
Oxymoron
Hyperbole
Personification
Puns
Simile

3. Ask students to write their own examples of figurative language, and place them in the final column. If you’d like, students could incorporate the figurative language into a rap of their own. See our Writing Academic Rhymes lesson plans to get your students writing.

4. Test students’ knowledge of the figurative language terms from the song with the Figurative Language Matching worksheet You can use this as a class-wide review or a quiz.

5. Encourage students to bring in examples of figurative language that they encounter in their daily lives, hear in songs, see in the newspaper or used in conversation. Record them on a board for all to see.

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One thought on “What is Figurative Language?

  1. Dikettie Jordan

    Very useful website for engaging students in learning various skills. I am going to try a lesson with a 4th class as I model a lesson for the teacher.

    Reply

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