April 17, 2013
Here’s a fun learning game to help you teach or review the definition of a verb as an action word. Start by brainstorming and recording verbs that can be acted out (jiggle, wink, slam, hop, saunter, etc.). If a child suggests a violent or inappropriate word, simply say that particular word is unacceptable for the game you are going to play and move on. Copy appropriate words on index cards and place them in a basket or box, face down.
Pick a student to be “it,” and have him draw a card, look at the word, and act it out. Several class members will guess the verb immediately, but they must raise their hand and be recognized if they want to have a turn at being “it.” The first “it” chooses a student who has his hand raised to name the verb that was enacted. If the student’s answer is correct, he becomes the new “it.” If his answer is incorrect, another student (if his hand is up) gets a chance.
This game causes lots of squealing, grunts, and so on, but it definitely reinforces the meaning of a verb. And needless to say, the kids love playing it. I suggest you keep your original set of index cards, but let the kids add new verbs every time they play the game. You’ll be surprised how much their “verb” knowledge grows throughout the year.