Finding exciting and creative ways to teach figurative language can help children better understand how it is used in everyday life. Upper elementary school is the perfect time for introducing students to the basics of figurative language. Here are some fun activities that you can use with your upper elementary students to help them develop a better understanding of the world that is figurative language!
These creative ideas are as sweet as the first sip of pumpkin spice in the fall! See what I did there? Ha!
I hope you enjoy these ideas!
Creative Ways to Teach Figurative Language
1.Figurative Language Scavenger Hunt. Set up a scavenger hunt in the classroom or at home for students to go on to find examples of figurative language. Provide clues that lead them to different objects or items throughout the room that have figurative language written on it. Once found, they have to identify the kind of figurative language the phrase is an example of. This activity helps to bring the language to life and creates one of several creative ways to teach figurative language while getting up and moving!
2. Figurative Language Matching Game. Provide students with a set of cards where the meanings of different figurative language phrases are written on half and the actual phrases are written on the other half. Then, have students match up which meaning goes with which phrase. This is one of my favorite creative ways to teach figurative language and can so easily be made into a game! You can find a pre-made Idioms Game here!
3. Figurative Language Charades. Have students act out common figurative language phrases in order for other students to guess what they mean. Encourage them to get creative with their movements and gestures, as this will help engage their imagination and make the activity more fun. From similes to idioms– the possibilities are endless!
4. Figurative Language Art. Give students a list of figurative language phrases, including similes, metaphors, and adages, and have them come up with unique ways to illustrate each one with a label explaining the type of figurative language displayed. This encourages them to be creative and think outside the box while applying their knowledge of figurative language in a visual format.
5. Figurative Language Worksheets. If you’re looking for a fun way to review and get some extra figurative language practice in, worksheets are a great option. My Figurative Language Worksheets and Posters resource has several creative ways to teach figurative language through fun and engaging worksheets and pre-made posters!
6. Figurative Language Storytelling. Have students write creative stories using figurative language. They can use characters from their favorite books or movies, or create new ones. Challenge them to use each kind of figurative language within their one story! This is one of many creative ways to teach figurative language and helps them to practice their storytelling skills while also applying the concepts that they’ve learned!
7. Figurative Language Rap. For a more musical approach to teaching figurative language, have students write a rap using figurative language phrases. Similar to storytelling, challenge students to include more than one type of figurative language! This will help them think on their feet, as they’ll have to come up with clever ways to incorporate the phrases into their verses.
Figurative language can be tough for students to master and keep track of, but learning it can be oh so fun! I hope you’ve found some new creative ways to teach figurative language that engage your students and help them master this concept! You can find more resources for figurative language and more here! Happy teaching!