Teaching parts of speech - subject, verb, object

dog drinking milkshake
15 Feb Shelley Vernon 2 Comments

Hello teachers!


A dismayed ESL teacher found that his students did not understand the concepts of subject, verb, object. When he tried to explain English grammar, he found that he needed to explain grammar. My games and teaching philosophy work for this too! Here's how to teach the concepts of subject, verb, object.


Explain what they are with examples.


subject - who or which does the action - I
verb - what is the action - DRINK
object - what is affected by the action - MILKSHAKE


Ask pupils for other examples of subjects, verbs and objects. Then show a list of ten sentences and ask kids to read out all the verbs.
If you have these on the board have a kid underline all the verbs in green as the class calls them out.
Then have the class identify all the subjects - underline in pink.
And then do the objects - underline in blue.


Have the class choose and write down EITHER a subject, an object or a verb,
(preferably using the colour code on the board).


Now kids go around the class looking for two other people with whom to make a sentence.
If a child has written down an object he or she has to find a subject and a verb.
When kids have joined up in groups of three they stand in their groups and wait a few minutes for others to finish.
Don't wait till everyone has finished.
Ask everyone who hasn't made a group to sit down and be prepared to switch places with a student in a group. Then listen to the sentences that have been created. Have each student sitting down swap places with someone in a group. This is important as they are included, even though they did not manage to find partners to make a sentence.


Follow-up idea

Using pictures ask children to make up 3 sentences each using a subject, verb and object. With the blog picture here examples are. The dog drinks milkshake. The dog is lying on the bed. The dog is wearing sunglasses. I can see a dog. Try finding the subject, verb and object in questions...can you see the dog?


In a future lesson you can play this again, but making groups of four and including adverbs.

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All the best

Kind regards

Shelley Ann Vernon


Thank you so much for your help. I really found it very useful. I'm sure my students will like it too.
Dear Shelley, Thank you very much for your useful ideas. I really appreciate it. Yours faithfully, Silvia

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