The Wind

poem by Jackie Hosking , illustrated by Matt Ottley

Learning intention

I am learning to describe the effects of language features on literary texts.

Success criteria

  • I can identify examples of personification in a poem.
  • I can discuss ways objects might feel.
  • I can compose sentences featuring personification.
  • I can discuss the impact of personification.

Essential knowledge

Discuss the term personification ensuring students are aware it means attributing human-like attributes to inanimate objects.

Learning resource

Read The Wind. Collaboratively identify examples of personification in the first stanza. For example:

  • describing the wind as ‘A gentle and whispering breeze’
  • the description of the wind ‘tickling all the leaves’

Discuss the impact the examples of personification have on readers. Sample responses include that the personification:

  • makes the ideas relatable
  • creates entertaining descriptions
  • brings ideas to life
  • creates connection between the object and the reader

Place students in pairs or small groups and instruct them to identify further examples of personification in the remainder of the lines in The Wind. Sample responses include:

  • describing the wind as, ‘angry,’ and, ‘That big, bully sound’
  • pondering what the wind might be trying to say such as, ‘Does it whisper hello
    or goodbye—who would know’
  • describing the wind as, ‘Kissing each creature goodnight’

Instruct students to discuss the impact of the examples of personification with their partner or group.

Inform students that they will be composing their own examples of personification.

Go for a walk around the school and note objects in the environment such as a bench, a rubbish bin, a basketball hoop or a tree. Alternatively, you may prefer to watch the video ‘Wild Play’ Garden for Kids. For each element you encounter on your walk or in the video pose the question, how might it be feeling? Some students might find this entertaining. Remind them to imagine the objects are alive. Provide examples such as:

  • the bench might have aching joints after supporting people so often
  • the rubbish bin might feel used and overlooked
  • the basketball hoop might feel desperate to catch any ball thrown in its direction

Return to the classroom and collaboratively compose brief sentences from the point of view of the objects encountered. For example:

I am so tired of everyone sitting on me. My joints ache and I am desperate to stretch.

I wish everyone would stop throwing their messy food wrappers at me. Every morning I get given a nice clean bag and by recess time it’s already disgusting, full of half eaten sandwiches and apple cores.

Place students in pairs. Instruct them to compose their own examples of personification based on the discussions surrounding objects encountered during the walk or in the video.