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Figurative Language Worksheets

Common Core State Standards demand that students identify figurative language techniques. This means that your standardized test is likely to question figurative language knowledge. Students can prepare for this through repeated exposure to figurative language. You can do this by studying figurative language poems, activities, or the worksheets on this page.
These worksheets will give students rapid fire practice with figurative language techniques. Not only must students identify the techniques, they must explain their answers. This approach forces students to consider their answers. It also helps teachers identify misunderstandings.

A Note about Formats

RTF – These are text files. You can edit these in a word processor, such as Microsoft Word.
PDF – These files are great for printing because they maintain their formatting no matter what.
Answer Keys – These pages contain advertisements, but the advertisements disappear upon printing. That means that you don’t have to worry about printing the ads.
Ereading Worksheets – These are online versions of these worksheets. Students can complete these on a web-connected computer, tablet, or phone. They can save, print, or email their results as a PDF file. Try these out if the technology is available.


Figurative Language Worksheet 1 – This ten-problem figurative language worksheet gives students practice identifying figurative language techniques. Read the examples, identify the technique, and explain your answer.
Figurative Language Worksheet 1 RTF
Figurative Language Worksheet 1 PDF
Preview Figurative Language Worksheet 1 In Your Web Browser
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Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test – Multiple Choice Only
Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test – Multiple Choice and Long Response

Figurative Language Worksheet 2 – Here is another ten-problem worksheet to give students practice identifying figurative language techniques. Read the poetic snippets, identify the techniques, and explain your answers.
Figurative Language Worksheet 2 RTF
Figurative Language Worksheet 2 PDF
Preview Figurative Language Worksheet 2 In Your Web Browser
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Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test – Multiple Choice Only
Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test With Long Response Questions

Figurative Language Worksheet 3 – This worksheet packs a double dose of figurative language practice: four sides and 27 problems! Students determine whether each snippet contains an example of simile, metaphor, personification, hyperbole, or idiom. Students are also required to explain their responses.
Figurative Language Worksheet 3 RTF
Figurative Language Worksheet 3 PDF
Preview Figurative Language Worksheet 3 In Your Web Browser
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Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test – Multiple Choice Only
Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test With Long Response Questions

Figurative Language Worksheet 4 – Ten more practice problems from classic poems to help students master figurative language. Read the examples, identify the techniques, explain your answers.
Figurative Language Worksheet 4 RTF
Figurative Language Worksheet 4 PDF
Preview Figurative Language Worksheet 4 In Your Web Browser
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Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test With Long Response Questions

Figurative Language Worksheet 5 – Here is another worksheet with 10 more practice problems to help students master figurative language. Read the examples, determine the technique, and explain your answer.
Figurative Language Worksheet 5 RTF
Figurative Language Worksheet 5 PDF
Preview Figurative Language Worksheet 5 In Your Web Browser
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Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test With Long Response Questions

Figurative Language Worksheet 6 – Do you need more practice with figurative language? This 23 problem worksheet with four pages should keep students busy for a little while. Identify the figurative language technique used in each example and explain your answers.
Figurative Language Worksheet 6 RTF
Figurative Language Worksheet 6 PDF
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Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test With Long Response Questions

Figurative Language Worksheet 7 – What’s better than figurative language practice? More figurative language practice! Here is another double-sided figurative language worksheet with ten problems. The language used in this worksheet is easier to understand.
Figurative Language Worksheet 7 RTF
Figurative Language Worksheet 7 PDF
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Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test With Long Response Questions

Figurative Language Worksheet 8 – Yet another four page figurative language worksheet to give you or your students practice. This one contains language that is easier to understand.
Figurative Language Worksheet 8 RTF
Figurative Language Worksheet 8 PDF
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Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test With Long Response Questions

Figurative Language Worksheet 9 – Here are 22 more figurative language problems. Read the poetry snippets, identify the figurative language techniques, and explain your answers.
Figurative Language Worksheet 9 RTF
Figurative Language Worksheet 9 PDF
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Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test With Long Response Questions

Lord of the Flies Figurative Language Worksheets: Four page, 26 question worksheet featuring examples of figurative language taken from one of my favorite books, Lord of the Flies. Students determine what figure of speech is used and explain their answers.
Lord of the Flies Figurative Language Worksheet – RTF file
Lord of the Flies Figurative Language Worksheet – PDF file
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Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test

Figurative Language of Edgar Allen Poe: Figurative language worksheet featuring line from stories and poems of Edgar Allen Poe. Students write which technique is being used on the line and then explain how they figured out the answer.
Edgar Allen Poe Figurative Language Worksheet RTF
Edgar Allen Poe Figurative Language Worksheet PDF

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Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test
Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test With Long Response Questions

Figurative Language of O. Henry: Twenty-three selected examples of figurative language from O. Henry’s short stories. Β This double-sided worksheet will give students plenty of practice.
Figurative Language of O. Henry RTF
Figurative Language of O. Henry PDF
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Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test
Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test With Long Response Questions

Figurative Language of Shakespeare: Shakespeare is not only a master of the theater, he is also a master of figurative language. His language is also a bit more difficult for most students to decode, so this is not a recommended activity for novices. Here are 23 figurative language examples used in Shakespeare’s tragedies, comedies, history plays, and sonnets.
Figurative Language of Shakespeare RTF
Figurative Language of Shakespeare PDF
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Ereading Worksheet | Online Practice Test

Figurative Language Video Game: Check out the first game on my new educational video game site ereading games. In this game students will answer literally hundreds of figurative language review questions while playing a fun and exciting game and learning about mythology.
Orpheus the Lyrical – Figurative Language Review Game

I also have figurative language tests and worksheets on poetic devices.

Common Core State Standards Related to Figurative Language

Anchor Standards

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.R.4 – Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a text, including determining technical, connotative, and figurative meanings, and analyze how specific word choices shape meaning or tone.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.CCRA.L.5 – Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and nuances in word meanings.

Expand to View All Common Core State Standards Related to Figurative Language
ELA Standards: Literature

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.3.4 – Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, distinguishing literal from nonliteral language.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.4.4 – Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including those that allude to significant characters found in mythology (e.g., Herculean).

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.5.4 – Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative language such as metaphors and similes.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.6.4 – Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of a specific word choice on meaning and tone.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.7.4 – Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of rhymes and other repetitions of sounds (e.g., alliteration) on a specific verse or stanza of a poem or section of a story or drama.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.8.4 – Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone, including analogies or allusions to other texts.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.4 – Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in the text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the cumulative impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone (e.g., how the language evokes a sense of time and place; how it sets a formal or informal tone).

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.11-12.4 – Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in the text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone, including words with multiple meanings or language that is particularly fresh, engaging, or beautiful. (Include Shakespeare as well as other authors.)

ELA Standards: Language

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.3.5 – Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships and nuances in word meanings.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.4.5a – Explain the meaning of simple similes and metaphors (e.g., as pretty as a picture) in context.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.4.5b – Recognize and explain the meaning of common idioms, adages, and proverbs.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.5.5a – Interpret figurative language, including similes and metaphors, in context.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.5.5b – Recognize and explain the meaning of common idioms, adages, and proverbs.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.6.5a – Interpret figures of speech (e.g., personification) in context.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.7.5a – Interpret figures of speech (e.g., literary, biblical, and mythological allusions) in context.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.8.5a – Interpret figures of speech (e.g. verbal irony, puns) in context.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.9-10.5a – Interpret figures of speech (e.g., euphemism, oxymoron) in context and analyze their role in the text.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.11-12.5a – Interpret figures of speech (e.g., hyperbole, paradox) in context and analyze their role in the text.

View Source
Common Core Lesson and Unit Plans
Understanding Common Core State Standards

 

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132 Comments

  1. Akber Ali

     /  March 4, 2017

    I am deeply touched to have seen this work. This is simply amazing…… I am so thankful.

    Reply
  2. Samarth Roy

     /  February 15, 2017

    I just wanna say……..”Doctor MOrton my literary misconceptions are afraid of you just like computer viruses from NORTON.

    Reply
  3. Christy Smith

     /  November 16, 2016

    Thank you for all your hard work on this site! I have used it for years in my classroom and find it the best way to teach poetic terms.

    Reply
  4. Ann

     /  October 27, 2016

    Is there a way to load these worksheets to my google classroom

    Reply
  5. B. Futrell

     /  September 27, 2015

    This is an amazing resource! Thank you so much!

    Reply
  6. sophia

     /  September 11, 2015

    Thank you this is great

    Reply
  7. Amanda Wilcox

     /  March 25, 2015

    Thanks so much for all the great resources. Where did the figurative language power point go? I used it yesterday but now cannot find. Thank you again.

    Reply
  8. valki

     /  February 10, 2015

    Thanks so much for your invaluable contribution!!

    Reply
  9. Kristie West

     /  September 11, 2014

    I love the site and awesome worksheets! I just have 1 problem πŸ™ Having a hard time figuring out what grade level are on some of the worksheet. I could be totally over seeing it. Can you please help me ?
    Thank you:)

    Reply
  10. Shereaka Jones-Wilson

     /  March 11, 2014

    Your site and resources are amazing. Thank you so much for allowing us novice ELA teachers to utilize them!

    Reply
  11. Hammoudi

     /  February 24, 2014

    Thanks teacher and Congratulations!!!!! you are now teaching thousands of students around the world!!!

    Reply
  12. Chel

     /  February 16, 2014

    Your work is truly great and helpful. Please keep it up.

    Reply
  13. mrs. poirier

     /  February 13, 2014

    This is the best website for a middle school English teacher. Thank you once again.

    Reply
  14. Thank you for connecting these elements to REAL poetry instead of silly, low-level rhymes. Trying to find these resources requires time- thank you for providing them on your site!

    Reply
  15. JoEtta Maxwell

     /  January 6, 2014

    This website is awesome . Thank you for sharing.

    Reply
  16. ganzgpp1

     /  November 22, 2013

    This website is awesome! I like the super grammar ninja game.

    Reply
  17. The Purple Lady

     /  September 6, 2013

    I cannot even BEGIN to express my gratitude for the exceptional work you have chosen to share with us! You have saved me a fortune in time!

    Reply
  18. zach

     /  April 19, 2013

    this is a wonderful site! πŸ™‚

    Reply
  19. Jennifer

     /  April 5, 2013

    Thank you for sharing these worksheets. I so appreciate your hard work.

    Reply
  20. i love this website it is the best

    Reply
  21. Cynthia Aguilar

     /  March 26, 2013

    This is amazing!!! This is awesome work for the high school students I have to tutor πŸ™‚ thanks!

    Reply
  22. Erica

     /  March 19, 2013

    Thanks for saving my skin! This site is great!

    Reply
  23. Angie

     /  March 15, 2013

    Thank you so much for sharing your work with other teachers. You are a gem.

    Reply
  24. Shouvik

     /  March 3, 2013

    Awesome collection of worksheets! its really helpful for young students!

    Reply
  25. K Connor

     /  February 12, 2013

    Thank you for your worksheets. They are well thought out and require students to use critical thinking skills!

    Reply
  26. Yzabella Fernandez

     /  February 5, 2013

    What a lifesaver! Thank you so much for sharing this. Wonderful! My life has been made easier and my students life, enriched!

    Reply
  27. Karina

     /  January 2, 2013

    thanks sooo much for this! it helped me a lot πŸ™‚

    Reply
  28. jette tuca

     /  November 22, 2012

    Fantastic site! Thank you! It is very helpful and my students love it!

    Reply
  29. elynn

     /  November 21, 2012

    Your worksheets are wonderful!

    Reply
  30. junior

     /  October 10, 2012

    thank you so much

    Reply
  31. junior

     /  October 10, 2012

    thank you so much because long time have difficilte to firgurative languade so now im really good that so thank you again god bless u

    Reply
  32. i absolutely love your website. it is so informative. you have wonderful ideas and you can adjust them to any level that you are teaching…kudos to you!

    Reply
  33. Jim Andrews

     /  June 19, 2012

    I love your worksheets, but some are a little risque there for 5th graders.

    Reply
    • Quite possibly. Thanks for reminding everyone to preview the materials before they use them in their own classrooms.

      Reply
  34. roskos

     /  June 5, 2012

    I would have liked to use your web-site but am appalled that you are advertising for scott walker. I will let everyone know to not use your site again.

    Reply
    • Whoops. Google selects the advertisements, not me. I’m not trying to support the enemy. Same team, same team…

      Reply
  35. Josie

     /  May 28, 2012

    Thank you very much for the worksheets, they’re very helpful and I’m using them to revise for my English Poetry topic test coming up, thank you for sharing! πŸ™‚

    Reply
  36. dharini

     /  May 14, 2012

    thanks a lot this was very useful to me

    Reply
  37. HSD333

     /  May 8, 2012

    This is wonderful! Thanks so much! What a live saver! A little hyperbole for you –

    Reply
  38. Danielle

     /  May 7, 2012

    This is great! I have spent so much time creating worksheets for figurative language! Currently I am looking for figurative language in fables/folktales. Any suggestions?

    Reply
  39. Jenny

     /  May 7, 2012

    Your website is incredible! Thank you so much for sharing all your hard work. As a fellow English teacher, I appreciate it greatly.

    Reply
  40. m.l. beam

     /  May 5, 2012

    Answers? I can figure them out myself. These worksheets are some of the best I have ever seen! THANKS for the sheets and the idea.

    Reply
  41. This has been an invaluable tool for me as I introduce and extend the learning of literary devices, author’s purpose, point-of-view, etc. to my 9th grade students with exceptional learning needs. I’m able to chunk practice opportunites in a way I would not have the time to prepare for on my own.

    Thank you,

    Andrea Akins

    Reply
  42. Gins

     /  April 30, 2012

    This is a free resource Sue! You should probably create your own so you won’t have to explain anything to 5th graders! Thank you Mr. Morton for all your hard work!

    Reply
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