The best way to teach parts of speech to kids is to make it interesting
and fun. When your students are enjoying an activity and learning
about parts of speech it is a win-win situation. Take a look at
this quick teacher's guide to teaching the parts of speech, and
see if they don't make your students want to learn more.
Pretests for Assessment
In order to get an idea of how much your students, as a whole,
already know about parts of speech, give them a pretest to assess
their knowledge. This test can be multiple choice, true/false,
or even a typed paragraph where the students have to underline
and label the parts of speech that they see. This will give you
direction on what kind of lessons would benefit the majority of
This activity is done by listing a word that has to do with
a particular topic down a sheet of paper instead of across. Students
must then use various parts of speech, such as nouns, adjectives,
verbs, and adverbs to create a poem out of the given word.
Here is an example:
S Snow is falling (noun, verb)
N neatly in a huge pile (adverb, adjective, noun)
O over my toy truck and (adjective, noun)
W water gun, as it quietly covers them in a cold blanket.
(noun, adverb, verb, adjective, noun)
Once the students write their poem, they have to identify the parts of speech
Mad Libs Teacher Edition
Create a Mad Libs story on a huge piece of paper that you can
hang on your whiteboard. Leave out the parts of speech. Instead
of you writing the missing words into the story, let the students
come up to the board and write them in for you. This will give
them the chance to participate more with the story, and will help
them think of words on their own.
Have two boxes, one labeled "Nouns" and one labeled "Adjectives."
Write a noun on an index card, and have one card for each student
in your class. Places the nouns in their appropriate box. Now
write at least 10 extra adverbs on index cards, and place them
in the box (e.g., 30 students = 30 noun cards and 40 adjective
cards). Make the words interesting and fun for the students. Now
have a student come up and take a noun card and an adjective card
and draw a picture on the whiteboard that combines the two words
together (e.g., sleepy mailman - draw a mailman with his eyes
shut). To guess correctly, a student has to say both the noun
and the adjective(s) being used in the picture.
Parts of Speech Charades
This activity is played much like "Picture Perfect" above, but
instead of students drawing their combinations of nouns-adjectives
they have to act them out in front of the classroom. You can use
this with verb-adverb combinations as well. In order for the next
student to take a turn, he/she has to guess both parts of speech
The Book I Choose
Take a trip to the school library. Have each student pick out
a book that they like to read, or a book by an author that they
consider their favorite. Take the books back to the classroom.
Now have the students go through the book (pick a chapter, for
instance) and identify the parts of speech of that the book/author
uses. Is there a predominant usage of certain parts of speech?
Is there a pattern to the types of adjectives he/she uses in the
book? Come up with other questions to ask your students to help
them review parts of speech.