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Art & Writing Projects from WritingFix: Simile Books and Illustrated Similes

A Writing and Art Project from WritingFix
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The Writing Lesson:
Paper Plate Simile Books

This writing and art project was co-authored by Northern Nevada teachers Sandra Young and Nancy Jeppson. This page contains both the lesson plan for the writing portion of this lesson as well as for the accompanying art project.

(Second-grader Olivia shows off her book's cover.)

(an illustrated page from a paper plate book)

Sandra and Nancy's Lesson Overview:

Students experience the fun and creativity of similes, ultimately describing themselves using comparisons and illustrations. The students' final product is a paper plate book of illustrated personal similes.

Lesson Materials:

Writing Lesson Instructions:

  1. Introduce the concept of a simile. Read poem “Predictable” from Bruce Lansky’s book If Pigs Could Fly... and Other Deep Thoughts (found on page 76 of our copy). Discuss and explain these “old predictable” similes. Enlarge and add to some of the similes. Example: White as a ghost in a flour factory. Work with the class to generate some of their own similes in order to grasp the concept.

  2. Read Quick as a Cricket and identify the similes used in the text as the story proceeds.

  3. Distribute the Simile Starters handout. Read and discuss together. Assist the class in generating some original simile starters to add to the list. Stress original!

  4. Distribute the graphic organizer titled My Simile Worksheet. Have students select their favorite simile starters and begin formulating comparisons about themselves. Sample; I feel as cool as a cucumber.

  5. Discuss the final detail they need to add that will tell where, when, or how. Sample: I feel as cool as a crisp cucumber in an August rain shower.

  6. When students have written their similes, transfer the sentences to the paper plates that serve as book pages. Carefully write the similes around the outer edge (one simile per page) then trace over writing with permanent marker leaving the center of the plate open for illustration.

  7. Put two hole punches in the top of each paper plate and place the pages in order; bind with strong or yarn

  8. Have a time set aside to share simile books.

Some Teaching "Hints" from this Lesson's Author:

  • This assignment can be as simple or as complicated as you desire.

  • WritingFix's Serendipitous Simile Generator might inspire your students!

  • Have fun doing this!

Revised and Edited Student Samples:

Teachers: Do you have a revised and edited examples of original first, third, fourth, or fifth grade samples to share? Photograph them and attach them to an e-mail and send it to us at Please write "Paper Plate Similes" in your e-mail's subject line.

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