Please Note: This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure (link) for more info.
We all are aware of the various figures of speech that are used in the English language. They contribute to a great extent in expressing ideas through comparison, observation, and exaggeration. The figures of speech are basically that spice that adds life to this language. Similes and Metaphors are two such important figures of speech.
These poetic devices use comparison between things, and objects to express the idea that the writer wants to convey. They tend to make articles lively, and witty. They also help in conveying abstract ideas and add a relatability factor to articles. They help poets display their creativity and express the abstract dimensions of the human mind through words.
However, teaching the concept of similes and metaphors can be indeed challenging! That’s when books come into the picture. Specific books designed for kids help boost the language skills and understanding in students. Such books are filled with apt graphical representations thereby conveying the meaning and message in an appropriate manner.
Interactive picture books to teach similes and metaphors
While many tools like games and activities can help kids become stronger at similes and metaphors, in the same way, books too have the power to convey messages in a meaningful way through graphical representation and fonts. Teachers and parents can utilize these books to subtly teach the concept of similes and metaphors in an engaging manner.
1. Skin Like Milk, Hair of Silk: What Are Similes and Metaphors?
This book is authored by Brian P. Cleary, who is known for being the best-selling author for his work Words Are CATegorical series, now a set with more than 3 million copies sold. Skin like Milk, Hair of Silk, is his work which is full of witty and smart rhymes from Cleary and humorous and creative illustrations from Brain Gable.
The work in the book encapsulates the reader into the world of similes and metaphors. The book is filled with printed similes and metaphors in color to identify them with ease. This book is eye-capturing and smartly woven to tickle young minds and fill them with knowledge. It is indeed fun for kids to engage with similes and metaphors in a vibrant manner resonating with their meanings and usage.
2. I Am Every Good Thing
This book is authored by Derrick Barnes who is also known for his New York Times bestseller: I am Every Good Thing was another New York Best Seller which won the Kirkus Prize Twice in 2020. This book has beautiful illustrations by Gordon C. James which are very positive and empowering. These illustrations are filled with a combination of Barnes’s work.
This book has the power to instill playfulness, politeness, and bravery and display to young minds glimpses of the potential of goodness that lies within each of them. This book is rich with similes and metaphors and can help in understanding the difference between them and also in knowing where and how to use these literary devices effectively while writing.
3. You’re Toast and Other Metaphors We Adore
This book is authored by Nancy Loewen. It is a book that can be used as an efficient tool to teach young children about the various figures of speech, especially metaphors and similes.
This book is full of colorful, joyful, and intriguing illustrations illustrated by Donald Wu. Moreover, children also get to learn about a plethora of idioms mentioned through visually appealing graphics.
It is an engaging read which helps children learn in a playful manner. Moreover, the book offers appropriate examples of sentences that depict similes and metaphors. With creative illustrations and the usage of simple language, children get an opportunity to instantly connect with the subject matter.
4. Crazy Like a Fox: A Simile Story
This book authored by Loren Leedy is a story that is told entirely through the help of similes. It is an interesting story about a fox named Rufus. This book is rich with Loren Leedy’s creative and engaging illustrations which bring the story to life. Interestingly, the book also offers to mean and in-depth explanation of similes.
It is a good choice for teaching figurative language and creative writing to children. It keeps the young readers engaged in reading and will also help them in writing similes of their own. Moreover, it is peppered with a minor introduction to idioms and cliches making it even more intriguing for children.
5. My Dog Is As Smelly As Dirty Socks: And Other Funny Family Portraits
This book is authored by Hanoch Piven, who is a well-known author and illustrator. This book is a descriptive book that uses various funny and witty illustrations to convey the characteristics of all the members of a girl’s family. The book is full of similes and metaphors and is a great tool that can be used to make learning fun and interesting.
The story revolves around different members of a family using similes and metaphors. Children get an opportunity to learn and create their own family portraits after going through the book. Simple yet funny illustrations create intrigue in learning.
6. Similes and Metaphors
Ann Heinrichs is the author of this book. This book has many illustrations illustrated by talented illustrators Dan McGeehan and David Moore. This book is full of similes and metaphors and also provides good insights by discussing various grammar rules. Moreover, the large font attracts children to read while also creating an emphasis on colors.
The illustrations appropriately demonstrate the meaning of the figures’ speech making it easy to create an interconnection between images and statements. It is a combination of knowledge in humor peppered with the artwork. Along with students, teachers can also use it as material to reinforce learning. The book surely provides an action-packed learning session for students as well as offers a diversified teaching experience for teachers.
7. Stubborn as a Mule and Other Silly Similes
This book is authored by Nancy Loewen. It is a book that is filled with dozens and dozens of intriguing similes. When one opens this book it would feel like they are entering into a whole illustrated universe of clever similes. This book is adorned with witty and funny illustrations illustrated by Adam Watkins and is an interesting read for young readers.
Along with this, the book has an engaging storyline that involves the readers in understanding the context as well as learning about figures of speech. Children also learn to visualize and get adapted to descriptive language. Vivid illustrations lay emphasis on fun learning.
8. Guacamole’s I Spy Metaphors
This book is written by Stacy J. Shaneyfelt, a certified secondary English and Drama educator, and an animal lover. This book is filled with many post-reading activities for kids and is also enriched with geographical information related to certain parts of Central and South America.
It is filled with vivid colorful kid-friendly illustrations by the popular French Illustrator Morgan Giuge which are extremely funny and will make children laugh their guts out. It is filled with similes, metaphors, and various other figures of speech which can help kids learn and know more about them. As it revolves around the theme of traveling and finding a quest, it becomes a mysterious read for students.
9. Quick as a Cricket
This book is authored by the celebrated author-illustrator duo Don and Audrey Wood. This book takes the readers through the journey of a young boy who describes himself by comparing himself to various animals of the animal world.
The story expresses the emotions of the young boy with the help of various emotions. It is filled with similes and various other figures of speech and its vivid illustrations are enough to keep kids engaged, curious, and interested to learn and absorb knowledge from this book.
10. Muddy as a Duck Puddle
This book is authored by Laurie Lawlor. It is a book that has a vast collection of similes from A to Z, it is also enriched with extremely funny folk expressions from Americans belonging to various spheres and categories of life. The usage and language and vibrancy in pages add to the fun dramatic element of a book.
There are funny similes and illustrations for each letter of the English alphabet. These illustrations are illustrated by the famous Ethan Long himself who is known worldwide for his creativity and ability to express various dimensions through the art of illustration.
Teaching the concept of similes and Metaphors can be challenging for teachers. However, the usage of kid-friendly books makes it easy for teachers to show relatable concepts and impart knowledge. Books help kids develop the art of descriptive writing and also convey more through the use of fewer words.
Such kid-friendly books inspire the learning of figures of speech through graphical representations, texts, and descriptive writings. So, teachers, adults, and parents can consider using these books for teaching the concept in an appropriate manner.
I am Shweta Sharma. I am a final year Masters student of Clinical Psychology and have been working closely in the field of psycho-education and child development. I have served in various organisations and NGOs with the purpose of helping children with disabilities learn and adapt better to both, academic and social challenges. I am keen on writing about learning difficulties, the science behind them and potential strategies to deal with them. My areas of expertise include putting forward the cognitive and behavioural aspects of disabilities for better awareness, as well as efficient intervention. Follow me on LinkedIn