Rain Falls, Night Falls Too

poem by Beverly McLoughland , illustrated by Ana María Méndez Salgado

Learning intention:

I am learning to examine metaphor and wordplay in a text so that I can create a text in the same style.


Success criteria:

  • I can identify metaphors in a text.
  • I can explain how wordplay and metaphors are used in a text.
  • I can experiment with wordplay and metaphor to create my own text.


Essential knowledge:               

  • More information about style can be found in the English Textual Concepts video Style.


Prior to reading the poem or showing the illustration to the class, read aloud the title of the poem, Rain Falls, Night Falls Too, to the class. Invite students to interpret the title and discuss as a class. Students might recognise that while rain falling is literal, the phrase ‘night falls’ is metaphorical.

Still concealing the illustration, read the poem or listen to the audio recording as a class. Ask students to visualise what the two illustrations that accompany the poem might look like. Have them discuss their thoughts with a partner and sketch out their ideas in a workbook. When the class has finished, display both illustrations in the magazine. Ask how the illustrations in the magazine help reinforce the metaphor (answer: by showing “drops of night” in the second illustration, compared to the first illustration showing rain falling). Have students compare the illustrations in the magazine to their own illustrations and ask them to identify which pair (theirs or the magazine’s) helps best demonstrate the metaphor and why.

Students should now be able to explain how the poem examines the metaphorical phrase “night falls” by comparing it the literal falling of rain.

Invite students to brainstorm other everyday phrases that are metaphors (as in, when thought about literally, make no sense). Give some examples to get them started, such as some of the following:

  • day breaks
  • time flies
  • couch potato
  • heart of gold
  • wind howls
  • fish out of water
  • heart of a lion
  • rollercoaster of emotions
  • music to my ears
  • piece of cake
  • break the ice
  • my cup of tea
  • cold feet


After students have collected enough, ask them to choose one to write a poem about, using the same style as Rain Falls, Night Falls Too. Ensure students understand that means they must compare the metaphor to a literal thing. This might mean they look at the metaphor ‘piece of cake’ and compare it to a literal piece of cake. Some other examples would be:

  • day breaks compared to glass breaking
  • time flies compared to a bird flying
  • heart of gold compared to a nugget of gold
  • wind howls compared to a dog howling

Explain to students that poems don’t need to follow the same rhyming scheme or rhythm as Rain Falls, Night Falls Too. Encourage them to come up with their own type of poem, as long as they are comparing a metaphor to a literal thing.

Assessment for/as learning:

When students are complete, they can draw two illustrations to reinforce the metaphor. Use a gallery walk for students to reflect and give feedback on the work of their peers.