Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Awesome Alliterations

Regina Letizia


The learner will build an interest and appreciate poetry through writing alliterative poems.


The student uses a variety of strategies to prepare for writing (for example, brainstorming, making lists, mapping ideas, grouping related ideas, keeping a notebook of ideas, observing surroundings, answering questions posed by others).

The student uses a variety of strategies (for example, base words and common spelling patterns) and resources (for example, dictionaries and thesauruses) to spell words.

The student understands similes, metaphors, analogies, and alliteration.

The student identifies and uses literary terminology appropriate to fourth grade or higher level (including but not limited to theme, simile, alliteration, metaphor).


-Writing paper
-Pencils and pens
-Colored pencils for each student
-Colored paper
-Copies of the Shel Silverstein poetry books: [A Light in the Attic].
New York: Harper Collins, 1981 and [Where the Sidewalk Ends]. New York: Harper Collins, 1974.
-Transparency pages


1. Prior to the administration of the lesson, make sure to gather the necessary materials for smoother transition. (See Materials.)
2. Prior to the activity with the students, read through and copy some of Shel Silverstein's poems onto a transparency sheet for the children to view visually while you read aloud. Some good poems which provide examples of alliteration from [A Light in the Attic] are Channels (page 87), The Fly is in (page 100), The Man in the Iron Pail Mask (page 113), Hitting (page 142), and Push Button (page 158).
Others from [Where the Sidewalk Ends] are Minnow Minnie (page 105) and Forgotten Language (page 149).
3. Creating your own alliterative poem to read to your class is always a good idea. Allowing the students to see the steps taken and the final product provides motivation and wonderful examples for your students.
4. You may want to discuss and display some posters which provide nouns, adjectives, verbs, and adverbs for which children to refer for some word ideas.


(Note: See Teacher Preparation for prior setup.)

1. Read aloud and display on a transparency sheet some preselected poems from the Shel Silverstein books for examples of alliteration. (Some examples and page numbers are provided in the Preparation section of the lesson plan.)

2. Explain that alliteration poems are poems which contain multiple lines, each beginning with the same letter, but not necessarily the same word. Point out the examples of alliteration in the poems; some of the poems incorporate other verses which do not follow the alliteration theme.

3. Allow children to point out examples of alliteration that they spot in the poems.

4. As an excellent model, read aloud your own alliterative poem to your class and display for children to see.

6. Assign each student one letter of the alphabet for them to create their own alliteration poems. Some letters may be used twice depending on class size.

7. Ask students to brainstorm some nouns, adjectives, verbs, and adverbs that begin with their letter.

8. Once the list is compiled, allow students to create their own alliterative poems about any subject they want. A theme may be incorporated, but it is not required.

9. Provide students with enough time to create their poems before moving on to the next step.

10. Hand out colored paper for students to print their alliteration poems and colored pencils for them to decorate their pages.

11. Finally, allow children to share their poems with their class by reading them aloud. Display the poems on a bulletin board entitled Awesome Alliterations.

12. Assess the activity. (See Assessment.)


Assessment will be individual and each student will be expected to provide their own alliterative poems. As the children work, circulate and offer feedback on their progress. The poems submitted should follow the alliterative theme, yet, if they do not, allow students additional time to meet the criteria. The students' individual poems will be evaluated by the teacher and should be graded using a rubric. A rubric can be created or presented orally to the class, and should parallel the standards that you will be incorporating in this lesson.
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