Caught in a Sunshower

poem by Jenny Erlanger , illustrated by Amy Golbach

Learning Intention:

I am learning to experiment with poetic techniques so that I can plan, edit and publish a poem.


Success Criteria:

  • I can identify poetic techniques used in a poem.
  • I can use at least three poetic techniques in a poem with the same topic.
  • I can edit my work for meaning and punctuation.


Essential knowledge:

Information about types of poetic techniques can be found on the NSW Education Department’s page Literary Devices.

For further information on the meanings of the techniques, see the NSW Education’s glossary.


Oral language and communication:

Without showing students the illustration, read the poem Caught in a Sunshower as a class or listen to the audio recording. Ask students what the poem is talking about (a spider’s web). If they’re unsure of the topic, guide them to the final line as a hint. Ask students why the poem references construction, artwork and diamonds. Ensure students understand that poetry often compares things using metaphors and similes. For an extended discussion of metaphor, analyse the metaphor in the poem Night Basketball found on page 13 of this issue of Orbit (the learning resource for this poem goes deeper into metaphor).


Understanding text:

Ask students to hunt through the text for examples of the following:


  1. Alliteration (creatively constructed; single, splendid)
  2. Assonance (dainty stays)
  3. Metaphor for the spider web (artwork)
  4. Metaphor for raindrops (diamonds)
  5. Personification (it elegantly sways)


Creating text:

Explain that students will be writing their own poem about spider webs. They can decide the poem’s rhyme and rhythm, including free verse, but they must use at least four poetic techniques in their poem. Encourage them to attempt at least one metaphor.


As well as the techniques found in Caught in a Sunshower, students can also use:





Once students have finished a draft of their poem, they need to reread and edit. They can do this by using a coloured pencil to fix any mistakes and underline any words they’re not sure they’ve spelt right. They can use a dictionary or online search to correct their spelling.


Once their draft has been edited, students publish their work either using a computer program such as Word or PowerPoint or by writing it neatly on paper. Students can illustrate.


Assessment for/as learning:

Students present their published work to their peers. Their peers should be able to identify the different poetic techniques they used.