What is a metaphor?

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By Kevin McCann — Poet

The poster is designed to show children how to devise metaphors and change similes into metaphors during re-drafting. The exercises have all been tested in the classroom but you may wish to try them yourself first as it will help to have a few suggestions prepared and ready. For example, in the numbers and alphabet games, it is easy to think of metaphors for some letters or numbers (H, for example, is a rugby post) but what about G or K?


Author’s note

The poster activities are naturally graded, increasing in complexity as you work through them. However, some children might benefit from playing the numbers and alphabet games first. I use similes from time to time in my own poems but I try not to overuse them, any more than I would try to use an adjective in every sentence. And remember, not all similes can be easily transformed into metaphors. There’s no ‘one size fits all’ rule in writing. I often find that in order for a line to scan, I must use a simile, but I will always prefer a metaphor.

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  1. harry beard
    on 3 February 2010


    it dose not tell you what a metaphor is. This site is called what is a metaphor so shouldn't it even have an explanation.
    [Resource Bank] Hi there, the poster gives the definition. Please become a member to access this part of the content.