examples of figurative language in poetry for your 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade lesson plans

7 Examples of Figurative Language in Poetry

7 examples of figurative language for upper elementary kids

Poems are full of figurative language examples, but both figurative language and poetry can be intimidating topics for 3rd, 4th, and 5th students. Ease them into figurative language in poetry with the kid-friendly examples below.

After sharing these examples, use one of these figurative language activity ideas to complete your lesson.

Or, spend less time on your poetry lesson plans with these ideas. 

Examples of Figurative Language in Poems for Upper Elementary Kids

O Wind, Why Do You Never Rest

O wind, why do you never rest
Wandering, whistling to and fro,
Bringing rain out of the west,
From the dim north bringing snow?

By: Christina Rossetti

Personification: The wind is wandering and whistling
Alliteration: Wind, why, wandering, whistling, west

The Unsociable Wallaby

Willie spied a wallaby hopping through the fern--
Here a jump, here a thump, there a sudden turn.
Willie called the wallaby, begging him to stop,
But he went among the wattles with a

By: C.J. Dennis

Alliteration: Willie, wallaby, went, wattles
Alliteration: flip, flap, flop
Onomatopoeia: thump, flip, flap, flop

November Night

Listen . . .
With faint dry sound,
Like steps of passing ghosts,
The leaves, frost-crisp'd, break from the trees
And fall.

By: Adelaide Crapsey

Simile: The leaves break from the trees like steps of passing ghosts


My mind has thunderstorms,
That brood for heavy hours:
Until they rain me words,
My thoughts are drooping flowers
And sulking, silent birds.

Yet come, dark thunderstorms,
And brood your heavy hour;
For when you rain me words,
My thoughts are dancing flowers
And joyful singing birds.

By: William H. Davies

Metaphor: This poem is one extended metaphor, comparing thoughts to thunderstorms, flowers, and birds.
Alliteration: sulking, silent

Give your 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students some no prep practice finding and thinking about figurative language in poetry with this Figurative Language in Poetry Packet. Students will read poems with similes, metaphors, alliteration, onomatopoeia, personification, and hyperbole, answer questions, and write their own short poems with figurative language.
No Prep Figurative Language in Poetry Worksheets for 3rd, 4th, and 5th Grade

There Was an Old Man in a Tree

There was an Old Man in a tree,
Who was horribly bored by a bee;
When they said, "Does it buzz?"
He replied, "Yes it does!"
It's a regular brute of a Bee!"

By: Edward Lear

Onomatopoeia: Buzz
Alliteration: bored, bee, brute

Excerpt from Jack-o-lantern Song

Whistle and whistle-- and whist! Now, list!
Woo-oo, woo-oo, Woo-oo, woo-oo–
Whirling and twirling, with turn and twist,
That wind-- it laughed "Ho oh!"

By: an unknown teacher

Alliteration: whistle, whist, woo-oo, whirling, wind
Alliteration: turn, twist
Personification: the wind laughed
Onomatopoeia: woo-oo

Kite Flying

Here two little sisters went walking one day,
Partly for exercise—partly for play,
Their kites they took with them they wanted to fly,
Were a big centipede and a big butterfly;
In a very few moments they floated up high,
Like a dragon that seemed to be touching the sky.

By: Unknown

Simile: the kites floated like a dragon that seemed to be touching the sky

You might also like these haiku poem examples and fun lesson idea for 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students. Note: all of these example poems are a part of the public domain.

This no prep figurative language packet will make your poetry lesson plans easy. Upper elementary students read kid-friendly poems, answer questions, and complete activities that will help them better understand both figurative language and poetry.
Figurative Language in poetry no prep worksheets for 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade

Text Structure Freebie

Nonfiction Text Structure Freebie to teach problem and solution for 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade

Use this text structure freebie to help you teach the problem and solution text structure.  

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