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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
Figurative Language Worksheet 1 | Preview
Figurative Language Worksheet 1 | Answers
Figurative Language Worksheet 1 | Ereading Worksheet (12 Questions)

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
Figurative Language Worksheet 2 | Preview
Figurative Language Worksheet 2 | Answers
Figurative Language Worksheet 2 | Ereading Worksheet (12 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
Figurative Language Worksheet 3 | Preview
Figurative Language Worksheet 3 | Answers
Figurative Language Worksheet 3 | Ereading Worksheet (20 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
Figurative Language Worksheet 4 | Preview
Figurative Language Worksheet 4 | Answers
Figurative Language Worksheet 4 | Ereading Worksheet (10 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
Figurative Language Worksheet 5 | Preview
Figurative Language Worksheet 5 | Answers
Figurative Language Worksheet 5 | Ereading Worksheet (10 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
Figurative Language Worksheet 6 | Preview
Figurative Language Worksheet 6 | Answers
Figurative Language Worksheet 6 | Ereading Worksheet (20 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
Figurative Language Worksheet 7 | Preview
Figurative Language Worksheet 7 | Answers
Figurative Language Worksheet 7 | Ereading Worksheet (10 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
Figurative Language Worksheet 8 | Preview
Figurative Language Worksheet 8 | Answers
Figurative Language Worksheet 8 | Ereading Worksheet (20 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
Figurative Language Worksheet 9 | Preview
Figurative Language Worksheet 9 | Answers
Figurative Language Worksheet 9 | Ereading Worksheet (20 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.
Figurative Language in Lord of the Flies | RTF
Figurative Language in Lord of the Flies | PDF
Figurative Language in Lord of the Flies | Preview
Figurative Language in Lord of the Flies | Answers
Figurative Language in Lord of the Flies | Ereading Worksheet

Figurative Language of Edgar Allen Poe – Here’s a figurative language worksheet featuring lines 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.
Figurative Language of Edgar Allan Poe | RTF
Figurative Language of Edgar Allan Poe | PDF
Figurative Language of Edgar Allan Poe | Preview
Figurative Language of Edgar Allan Poe | Answers
Figurative Language of Edgar Allan Poe | Ereading Worksheet (10 Questions)

Figurative Language of O. Henry: Twenty-three selected examples of figurative language from O. Henry’s short stories.  This double-sided worksheet will give students plenty of practice.
Figurative Language of O. Henry | RTF
Figurative Language of O. Henry | PDF
Figurative Language of O. Henry | Preview
Figurative Language of O. Henry | Answers
Figurative Language of O. Henry | Ereading Worksheet (10 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
Figurative Language of Shakespeare | Preview
Figurative Language of Shakespeare | Answers
Figurative Language of Shakespeare | Ereading Worksheet (20 Questions)

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.

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Common Core Lesson and Unit Plans
Understanding Common Core State Standards

 

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150 Comments

  1. ali

     /  June 13, 2017

    Thank you very much for providing the worksheets. It is very helpful. Gob Bless and keep up the good work.

    Reply
  2. Akber Ali

     /  March 4, 2017

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

    Reply
  3. 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
  4. 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
  5. Ann

     /  October 27, 2016

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

    Reply
  6. I honestly could not survive as a teacher without your items — I utilize it in so many ways!

    Reply
  7. Dr. Seema Singh

     /  June 25, 2016

    Very useful worksheets to give ample practice to my students. Saves a lot of time !!
    Thanks a lot

    Reply
  8. Sam

     /  May 29, 2016

    I cannot even begin to imagine how many hours and days and years this has taken you. To say that I am grateful, Mr. Morton, is an understatement. Because of your efforts, I believe thousands upon thousands of students are getting a better education. (This comes from a beginning teacher with little experience putting together language units). Praise God for your generosity, kindness and effort.

    Reply
  9. kolton

     /  January 26, 2016

    thank you for providing these worksheets as a resource for students like me 🙂

    Reply
  10. B. Futrell

     /  September 27, 2015

    This is an amazing resource! Thank you so much!

    Reply

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