Alliteration, Rhyme, and Onomatopoeia

Teaching Sound Devices including Alliteration, Rhyme, and Onomatopoeia to Upper Elementary Students


This post shares lesson plans I created for my fourth and fifth-grade students on sound devices. You’ll find activities for alliteration, rhyme, and onomatopoeia. The skills covered were based on the old Tennessee Standards. Because of this, you’ll find alliteration in both PowerPoint presentations. If your teaching standards are not organized this way, you can merge or delete slides. You could easily break the PowerPoints into three – one for each sound device. You could also merge the PowerPoints together into one covering all three sound devices.

PowerPoints for Alliteration, Rhyme, and Onomatopoeia

Both PowerPoints begin with a hook activity. This high-interest activity features videos. Discussion questions follow. Lesson goals, an essential question, teaching standards, and a list of how the skill is going to be evaluated come next. 

Following the essential components of the lesson, you will find a number of activities. The PowerPoint introduces the activities. See them below.

Activities for Alliteration, Rhyme, and Onomatopoeia

Activity #1 Graphic Organizer

Three versions of each organizer are provided. One contains blanks for students to write in definitions and missing information. One includes definitions in a cloze format. The third contains answers. The third copy of the organizer may be used as an answer key or, for differentiated instruction. It is helpful for students who were absent during instruction. At times you may want students to have the paragraphs already completed due to time constraints.

Sound Devices Organizer

Instructions for Making the Organizers

  • Print the organizer onto colored paper.

  • Have students fill in the missing information in the blank spaces.

  • To make the organizer, trim around the four edges on the lines indicated. Fold the page in half vertically on the dotted line. Cut on the line indicated on the inside of the organizer, up to the fold so that the organizer opens with two flaps.

You can download these organizers using the links below.

Activity #2 Pinch Cards

Using Pinch Card to Show Sound Devices

Instructions for Making the Organizers

Students use the pinch cards to show their answers to the examples in the PowerPoint. [Pinch cards are response cards that you don’t cut apart the individual words. this eliminates strips of paper. I love them because you don’t find all the strips of paper on the floor after class. Print the page onto cardstock. I usually make a large pocket in the students’ interactive notebooks for storage. Students show their responses to questions by holding the card so that they are pointing to the correct answer. This is a great way to quickly make sure students understand the concepts.] To receive a printable copy of this pinch card click here.

Activity #3 Group Activity with Songs to Find Sound Devices

Words to Rocky Top
Lyrics to The Trolley Song
Words to Splish Splash

Instructions for Completing the Activity

  1. Divide students into small groups.
  2. First students watch the song video listening for sound devices.
  3. After the song was over, give students 90 seconds to find sound devices in the song lyrics.
  4. Using two colors of highlighters, one for each type of figurative language studied, students highlight the copy of the song.
  5. After 90 seconds, each group alternately tells the class a sound device from the song until all are named.
  6. Each group receives one point for naming lyrics from the song containing a sound device. A second point is given for telling which type of sound device the lyrics contain.
  7. The group finding the most sound devices is the winner of the activity.

4th Grade “Rocky Top” and “Splish Splash”
5th Grade “The Trolley Song” and “Splish Splash”

Get the lyrics to the songs here:

Rocky Top

The Trolley Song

Splish Splash

Activity #4 RAFT

The final activity uses the RAFT Writing Strategy. Six topics for each category make many possible writing assignments.

Students select one item from each RAFT column. One student may be a teacher writing a song for a group of parents asking them to change a rule in the school. Another person may be an artist addressing peers on a billboard that will inform them of an event. Dozens of options may be selected from just this one RAFT assignment.

This writing strategy not only helps students understand the varied formats of writing, but to know the audience they will address their role as writers, and writing topics.

You will find activities and printables here: RAFT Writing Strategy.


Gay Miller

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    • children rhymes on May 4, 2016 at 7:47 am

    Very descriptive post, I liked that a lot. Will there be a part 2?

    • Ada on June 23, 2016 at 6:17 pm

    bookmarked!!, I like your website!

    • Adrian on July 29, 2016 at 1:57 pm

    Really great post! Keep up the great work. I’ll be back to read more!

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