Figurative Language

Metaphor, Hyperbole, Idioms: The Non-literal Elements

Metaphors, similes, idioms, hyperbole and personification are often used by authors of fiction and poetry... and often ignored by English language learners. Native English speakers use them in conversation and can't always explain their meaning. It is important for Korean students to be able to identify figurative language and make meaning of it, so as to understand writing or spoken conversation.

Your student needs these skills. By comparing one thing to another, the writer evokes emotions or memories, helps the reader to make connections, and/or adds interest to the writing. Writing is able to come alive and grip the reader's interest. Story and speeches hold an audience waiting and captive.

Grades: 4-9 (difficulty varies by grade and ability)

16 Classes (45 minutes per class)

Cost: ₩22,000 per class (₩352,000 Total)

Lead Instructor

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Bethany Lanier, M.A.

An innovative, flexible and creative educator with advanced cross-cultural skills and teaching experience, Ms. Bethany is an enthusiastic and passionate teacher who specializes in teaching English to ESL students. She has a Masters in English Language Teaching from the University of Auckland and 15 years of teaching experience. She is an ESL and reading specialist. She loves to teach students English and help them reach their potential in school and in life. Ms. Bethany specializes in making her lessons accessible to her students despite their limited English. She has lived and worked in many different countries. Her time living in different countries has helped her relate to her students in a special and unique way.

Award Winning Instructors

Leaders in their Field

1000s of teaching hours

Featured Achievement: Masters of Professional Studies in Language Teaching from The University of Auckland, 100% success rate for students passing national and state tests in 15 year career

Course Description

By the end of this class, students will be able to understand, define, and use various forms of figurative language. They will learn a multitude of idioms, as well as examples of similes, metaphors, hyperbole and personification. They will understand non-literal communication. Students will learn to interpret meaning through the use of context clues. Students will be able to differentiate between literal and figurative language. Students will be able to explain the meaning of simple similes and metaphors in context. Students will be able to identify examples of hyperbole and personification. Students will explain the meaning of common idioms and use them in conversation.

The students will learn how to craft, develop and assemble a fiction portfolio. Specifically, students will:

  • Students will be able to differentiate between literal and figurative language
  • Students will be able to explain the meaning of simple similes and metaphors in context
  • Students will explain the meaning of common idioms and use them in conversation
  • Students will be able to identify and comprehend examples of hyperbole when reading and listening
  • Students will be able to identify and comprehend examples of personification when reading and listening
  • Students will be able to sort and classify various forms of figurative language as metaphor, simile, idiom, hyperbole, or personification
  • Students will be able to use figurative language when writing or speaking English

Students should have an intermediate understanding of the English language. There are three levels of the course: Level 1, level 2 and level 3. Level 1 speakers may understand academic vocabulary and possess strong listening skills but struggle to respond fluently and with correct grammar. Level 2 are students that take normal classes in English, students who might go to an international school for example and have no trouble speaking English but want to learn the skills offered by this class. Level 3 are comfortable with speaking English and high achievers in their classes. This would be equivalent to an honor roll student. All students will be individually assessed by the instructor to determine their capacity to take this seminar at any level.

In the event that the student's level is not sufficient for this class, another class can be offered that would be more suitable for the English level. If you like the instructor, we all have one-on-one sessions available.

Before each class students are expected to have completed all assigned readings and assignments.

All tasks will be assigned in class. Students will be expected to do work in specified google docs and share them with the teacher as well as their individual NSEO work book (included with the course). Students should be prepared to present and discuss the work with teachers and peers.

Students will be graded A for exceptional work, B for above average, C for above average, D for below average, and F for unacceptable. + and - will be included with the letter grade. There will also be a post-class assessment of the student's progress.

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