Verb lesson plans are the figurative backbone of a grammar teacher's class. Without a verb lesson plan, students will be lost on possibly one of the most important grammatical lessons of all. Verb tenses pervade just about everything we say and do. Below is a sample lesson plan for verbs, which can serve as a creative guidepost for your teaching needs.
This lesson plan is designed for students from 2nd to 4th grade. It works to break down verbs for students through lectures and activities.
After the completion of this lesson, students will:
- recognize different types of verbs
- identify verbs in various sentences
- use present and past tense verbs
Prepare your class for the lecture by writing the following statement on the whiteboard:
"You use sentences with many verbs daily. Let's see if you can identify the verbs in the following sentence."
1. Provide a definition of what a verb is on the board. For example:
Verb Defined: A verb is a word that defines action - an action word. It will tell what the subject of a sentence is doing or what will happen.
- Example A: "Terry ran upstairs." (ran tells what Terry did - Terry is the subject.)
- Example B: "Katie eats her lunch." (eats tells what Katie is doing - Katie is the subject.)
2. Give students an example, such as:
"James throws the ball and laughs with his friends after he falls trying to catch it."
3. Have them identify the verb.
4. Write several more sentences on the board until students can clearly identify the verb.
Once your students have a solid understanding of verbs in sentences, you can use fun verb activities to help push learning.
Create a "Snap, Crackle, Pop" verbs worksheet by writing popular verbs on the left side of the page. The number of verbs you include can be determined by the grade level of your class. Additionally, provide students with several books to look through for the verbs.
- Hand out "Snap, Crackle, Pop" verbs worksheets to the class. Tell them on the left side of the page there are various popular verbs used in books and magazines.
- Read the verbs together.
- Provide several books for students to look through.
- Group the students into pairs.
- Have students find the verbs in sentences, and copy the sentences on to the right side of their paper next to the verb.
To continue to reinforce verb recognition and identification, try having students prepare sentences of their own and identify the verb(s) in each.
Explain to your students that:
- There are two types of verb tenses, past and present.
- A past tense verb describes something that has already happened.
- A present tense verb describes something that is currently happening
Provide the following examples:
- Past Tense: I ran with Jaime. Lacy ran with Jeff. Jeff ran to me. We all ran away.
- Present Tense: I am walking. Lacy is walking with Jeff. Jeff is walking with me. We all walk together.
Have students form their own past and present tense sentences. Have students share their sentences with the class and identify which verbs are past tense and which verbs are present tense.
Have students write a two-paragraph story using common verbs, as well as past and present tense verbs. These paragraphs should infuse noun usage from previous grammar lessons with verb usage from the current lesson. Have students take turns reading one of their paragraphs to the class and identify the verbs within each paragraph.
Verbs can be fun to get your students moving. To keep your lesson fun, play a game with verbs.
- Start by calling out a verb that students can act out like "yawn."
- Then say a sentence using "yawn."
- Then select a student to call out another verb to act out like "jump."
- Have the student then create a sentence properly using the verb.
- Keep selecting students to act out verbs and create sentences, trying not to repeat any verbs.
- Challenge students to think of unique verbs.
This verb lesson plan is a prime example of how a lesson plan should be structured and organized. While it may seem tedious, it is important to set up a lesson plan like this when there is a topic that may be challenging to students. The notion of verb tenses can get tricky for some students. This is why the lesson plan encourages teacher-student interaction. Keep your learning moving by trying this lesson plan on storytelling and fables.