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NCTE: Mining Tunes for Metaphor and Simile

Published on 07/19/2006

Activity Overview

Students write lyrics from songs as examples of metaphor and simile. They share the lyrics with the class and distinguish between metaphor and simile in the lyrics. They discuss whether or not these metaphors and similes were used effectively.

Before the Activity

See the attached Activity PDF file for detailed instructions for this activity.

Print the appropriate pages from the Activity for your class.

Install the NoteFolio(tm) App on the students' graphing calculators following the attached instructions.

You may want to use the transparency from Activity 1 as a quick review of metaphor and simile. Since students will be using actual song lyrics, it may be useful to schedule time in the computer lab so that the students can obtain the actual lyrics to the songs they want to use for the assignment by printing them from the Internet.

During the Activity

  • Distribute the appropriate pages from the Activity to your class
  • Distribute the and NoteFolio(tm) file(s) to your class using TI Connect(tm) and the appropriate TI Connectivity cable
  • Follow the procedures outlined in the Activity


  • Students will:
  • Read and view texts and performances from a wide range of authors, subjects, and genres.
  • Understand and identify the distinguishing features of the major genres and use them to aid their interpretation and discussion of literature.
  • Identify significant literary elements (including metaphor, symbolism, foreshadowing, dialect, rhyme, meter, irony, climax) and use those elements to interpret the work.
  • Recognize different levels of meaning.
  • Read aloud with expression, conveying the meaning and mood of a work.
  • Evaluate literary merit based on an understanding of the genre and the literary elements.
  • Present responses to and interpretations of literature making references to the literary elements found in the text and connections with their personal knowledge and experience.
  • Produce interpretation of literary works that identify different levels of meaning and comment on their significance and effect.
  • Write stories, poems, essays, and plays that observe the conventions of the genre and contain interesting and effective language and voice.
  • After the Activity

    Students should be directed to share the song lyrics with their classmates that they haven't shared aloud, be it in class or outside of class, as a way of encouraging them to continue to consider the practical value of these literary devices.