Using Mentor Texts to Teach Personification: Twighlight Comes Twice

We have been steadily working through a review of figurative language here in Coffee Cups land.  I like to start out my year giving a basic definition of several types of figurative language, and then spending a week or two digging a little deeper into their use.  When I have finished with each type, we spiral through again throughout the year with different activities.   I try to introduce each type with a fun video.  Geico Insurance is a master as personification in their commercials.  Here is the video I use-  It's fun and grabs their attention.

I also like to use one of my favorite mentor texts: Twilight Comes Twice by Ralph Fletcher.  He has such a beautiful way with words.  It is very easy to get caught up in the imagery of the text.
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I mean who would not fall in love with text like this:
Fireflies appear, swimming through the air, writing bright messages in secret code.

I begin by reading and discussing the text with my students.  We talk about the other types of figurative language that are found in the text, and there are tons!  It is a perfect review if you have already done similes, metaphors, onomatopoeia and alliteration.  Then I give each of my students a half sheet of cardstock and a strip of paper.  Each paper strip contains an example of personification from Twilight Comes Twice.  As a class we review the sentences and discuss what the "person" is in each sentence, and then how we could draw a literal example of the image.  Finally, each student spends class time drawing an example of their personifed sentence.
Here are a few examples from my class.

Don't you LOVE when students take different perspectives of the same topic!  They never cease to amaze me!
There is also a video of Jeff Hardon reading Twilight Comes Twice on Youtube  which has great music added to it.  I use it in my classroom as a reference tool for students because our next step is writing personification poetry.

Have a great day!

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