The Tyger by William Blake Lesson Plan

Instructor: Bethany Calderwood

Bethany has taught special education in grades PK-5 and has a master's degree in special education.

This lesson plan uses William Blake's poem 'The Tyger' to study imagery and teach students to write using imagery. The lesson plan includes a video lesson, discussion questions, group and individual activities and a writing project.

Lesson Objectives

As a result of this lesson, the students will be able to do the following:

  • identify imagery used in the poem ''The Tyger''
  • use imagery to describe something in their own experience
  • identify themes of ''The Tyger'~


  • 1 hour

Curriculum Standards


Demonstrate understanding of figurative language, word relationships, and nuances in word meanings.


Determine a theme or central idea of a text and how it is conveyed through particular details; provide a summary of the text distinct from personal opinions or judgments.


Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including figurative and connotative meanings; analyze the impact of a specific word choice on meaning and tone


Use precise words and phrases, relevant descriptive details, and sensory language to convey experiences and events.


  • Apostrophe
  • Tone
  • Imagery
  • Juxtaposition
  • Theme


Lesson Instructions

To begin the lesson, have a few students volunteer to read the poem ''The Tyger'' to the class. Students should listen for differences in tone and inflection shown by different readers.

Imagery in ''The Tyger''

  • Review the definition of imagery.
  • On their copy of the poem, have students underline words that they feel create an interesting or a surprising image.
  • Discuss the following:
    • What are the emotions evoked by the author's choice of images?
    • How do you think the author feels about the tiger?
    • How do you feel about the tiger after reading this poem?
    • Why do you think the author wrote this poem?

Contrast Between ''The Tyger'' and ''The Lamb''

  • Play the video lesson The Tyger and the Lamb: Summary & Analysis.
  • Discuss the following:
    • How does the juxtaposition of the poem ''The Tyger'' with the poem ''The Lamb'' change how you interpret the poem?
    • ''The Tyger'' was included in a collection called Songs of Experience. How is a tiger associated with experience?
    • What do you think is the relationship between innocence and experience?
    • Do you agree with the lesson's assessment that the theme of the poem is curiosity? What are other possible themes?
  • Have students work in pairs to complete the worksheet to check for understanding.

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