Monday, March 2, 2015

Add Pizzazz with Similes: A Writing Mini Lesson

One way students can add pizzazz to their writing is by adding figurative language such as similes. Similes bring a person, place, or thing to life by using "like" or "as" in comparisons.

Here's a quick writing mini lesson about using similes that you can do with your students.

Read the book Quick as a Cricket by Audrey Wood to students.  Although it is a picture book for young children, it's chock full of great similes that compare a small child to different animals and insects.  It's perfect for this writing mini lesson.  While reading, point out to students that there is a pattern in these similes.  They all use an adjective such as "quick" and a noun such as "cricket".  The book also teaches antonyms such as "quick as a cricket" or "slow as a snail".

Brainstorm NEW Adjectives
Create a chart with the adjectives that were used in the book (see chart below).  Have students brainstorm synonyms to replace the words used in the book.  Students can use a thesaurus or explore to find synonyms.  They can jot them down in their notebook or journal.

Create NEW Similes
After students come up with synonyms, have them use these newly found words to create NEW similes.  They can use the pattern in the book if needed.

Students share their newly written similes with a partner, or during whole group share.  They will be inspired by all the creative figurative language that is shared!

So, there it is...a writing lesson that's easy and will help your students add pizzazz to their writing.

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