Hyperbole and Paradox
Using Internet resources the students find definitions and examples of hyperboles and paradox, and then create their own to share with peers, and identify their use in a current reading selection.
Grade Level: 11 - 12th
Subject: English/Language Arts
Length of Time: About 2 Class Periods
Common Core Alignment
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.11-12.5 - Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and nuances in word meanings.
CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.11-12.5B - Analyze nuances in the meaning of words with similar denotations.
Objectives & Outcomes
The students will be able define hyperbole and paradox, create examples of each, and identify examples in current literature.
- Internet access for each student, class notebooks, 5-7 index cards, current class reading selection
- Prepare ahead of time: Samples of popular or common hyperboles and paradox to display, 2 or 3 or each. Current class reading selection identifying hyperboles and paradox.
Opening to Lesson
- Display the examples of hyperboles and paradox
- Ask students what makes the statements unusual
- Allow for all responses, and ask if students can think of other examples off the top of their head
- Ask students: What is the purpose of such statements?
- Reveal the terminology for each statement
Body of Lesson
- Direct students to the numerous web sites on the Internet to learn more about hyperboles and paradox
- Guide students to visit more than one web site to find information and examples.
- Students must then list the definition of each in their notebooks and the various synonyms for hyperbole (exaggeration, overkill, embellishment, etc.) and paradox (contradiction, inconsistency, etc.)
- Once each student is completed with the research and is away from the computer, distribute the index cards
- Each student is to create 3 or 4 hyperboles and paradox of their own, writing their name on each index card (Remind them to write each on the index card, but do not identify it is a hyperbole or paradox.)
- Once students are completed, the teacher collects all of the cards, mixing them, and then reading two or three aloud for students to identify
- The teacher will then distribute the remaining cards equally to the class
- The students will identify each statement and return the card to the writer to discover the correct answers
- Using the current class reading selection the students will identify hyperboles or paradox used by the author
- Have a class discussion and allow students to read aloud the identified statements as hyperbole or paradox
- The teacher will distribute the worksheets and/or reading passages to evaluate the students’ knowledge of hyperboles and paradox.
Repeat the question: What is the purpose of using hyperboles and paradox? Allow for discussion to evaluate understanding.
Assessment & Evaluation
A teacher-created or commercial worksheet allowing students to identify the different types of hyperboles or paradox, matching or multiple choice. Passages from popular/classic literature with hyperboles or paradox for students to identify.
Modification & Differentiation
Students may work in pairs. Assign some of the lesson for homework. Teach the two terms separately. Include other figurative/literal language concepts, etc.