Let’s Rhyme Superhero Style!

by Imani R. Sims


The Fall is always a great time to encourage students to encounter fantastic aspects of themselves.  In the lesson below, I encouraged my students to create superhero versions of themselves and create an antagonist who would then motivate the plot.  This lesson encouraged them to integrate their knowledge of Beginning, Middle, End and creating narrative poetry. It was also great practice with rhyme and repetition.


Let’s Rhyme Superhero Style!


Set: BNV Poem (0:04)

Question: What did you like about it?  Where did you hear instances of simile, metaphor, or personification?


We are going to build on your poetry skills by adding repetition, rhyme and Onomatopoeia.


Mini Lecture: (0:16)


1.  Repetition – the repeating of words, phrases, lines, or stanzas.

For example: Humpty dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty dumpty had a great fall…


2.  Rhyme – The similarity of ending sounds existing between two words.

For example: I enjoyed the shade in the hidden glade.


3.  Onomatopoeia – the creation of words that imitate natural sounds

For example: Bam! Zap! Pow!


Group Activity (0:26): Read each poem aloud.  Identify and label the rhyme scheme.  Is there a plot progression in each poem?


We Real Cool

By: Gwendolyn Brooks




We real cool.

We Left school.


We Lurk late.

We Strike straight.


We Sing sin.

We Thin gin.


We Jazz June.

We Die soon.



  by Langston Hughes


Hold fast to dreams

For if dreams die

Life is a broken-winged bird

That cannot fly.


Hold fast to dreams

For when dreams go

Life is a barren field

Frozen with snow.



Writing Prompt (0:40): If you could have a super power, what would it be?  Give yourself a superhero name.  Use rhyme, onomatopoeia, and repetition to describe your superhero, how you use your powers, and the crime fighting you do on a regular basis.  You can describe your secret hideout, your most epic battle, or how you became a superhero.  Also, create a villain that is your archenemy.  Give them a super power and perhaps your superhero and your villain meet under tense circumstances.


Share Out in small groups (0:52): Look for instances of rhyme, onomatopoeia, and repetition in someone else’s work.


Exit Ticket (1:00): write down your favorite example from someone else’s work and their name.  Turn it in before exiting.


This lesson worked extremely well for seventh and eight grade students.  While they experienced a bit of trouble getting started, once they made creative decisions the writing began to flow.  One of my students created a Superhero that involuntarily spontaneously combusted.  Another student created a secret hideout in a refrigerator.  


Whether they magnified positive attributes or created super villains out of famous basketball players, their imagination stretched beyond what is humanly possible.  I hope this lesson proves to be helpful as you continue to inspire young minds.


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