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Lesson Plan: Subject-Verb agreement

I. Explicit instruction: 15-20 minutes

A. Introduce the lesson by telling students that telling students that you are going to
review locating subjects (nouns) and predicates (verbs).
2. Explain to students that we are going to review how to find the subjects
(nouns) and the predicates (verbs).
B. What are verbs?
1. Elicit from individual students what a verb would they explain
it to another student?
2. Explain that there are two basic types of verbs: action and linking verbs
and that we are going to start with action verbs, like run, hit, fall, etc.
3. Elicit what a subject is? Then write some simple nouns on the board,
like ball, dog, boy, bird, etc.
4. Explain that there are several types of nouns, but we are only concerned
with concrete nouns.
5. See pages 469 ff and 479ff in McDougal, Littell English, (the blue book)
for further examples and information.
1. Action verbs/Subject: It is simpler for students to locate the action verb
before locating the subject. Getting students in the habit of searching this
way will help them when they are looking at more complex sentences.
2. Student study guide for subjects and verbs
a. VERBS Study Sheet
A verb is a word that expresses an action, a condition, or a state of being.
There are two main categories of verbs: action verbs and linking verbs. Other verbs,
called auxiliary verbs are sometimes combined with action verbs and linking verbs.
An action verb is a verb that tells what action someone or something is performing. The
action may be physical or mental.
Physical Action
Mental Action

We worked hard on the fund drive.

Everyone hoped for success.

A linking verb does not express action. Instead it links the subject of the sentence to a
word in the predicate.
Mr. Jones is our teacher. (The linking verb is links the subject Mr. Jones to the

Noun teacher.)
That dog looks miserable. (The linking verb looks links the subject dog to the
Adjective miserable.)
Linking verbs may be divided into three groups.
Forms of To Be

Sensory Verbs

Verbs that Express Condition

I am happy.
The snake feels smooth.
Everyone looked hot.
Dad is a pharmacist.
This yogurt tastes different.
The tomatoes grew tall.
Our shoes were wet.
The music sounds loud.
The salad stayed fresh.
My cousins are from Ireland.
The basement smells damp.
The audience
became restless.
Sometimes the same verb can be a linking verb or an action verb.
Linking Verb
The fish tastes delicious.
Everyone looked hungry.

Action Verb
The cook tastes the fish.
He looked for some herbs.

Note: If you can substitute is, are, was, or were for a verb, you know it is a linking verb.
An action verb or a linking verb sometimes has one or more auxiliary verbs, also called
helping verbs. The verb that the auxiliary verb helps is the main verb. In the following
examples, the auxiliary verbs are in italics. The main verbs are in boldface type.
The skies should clear by noon.
The wind has been blowing since midnight.
The most common auxiliary verbs are forms of be, have, and do.
Be: am, is, are, was, were, be, been, being
Have: have, has, had
Do: do, does, did
Other common auxiliary verbs are listed below
Can will shall



Together the main verb and one or more auxiliary verbs make up a verb phrase.
Auxiliary verb(s)
+ Main Verb =
Verb Phrase
had been
have had
was doing
could have
could have helped
might have been seen
might have been seen
is being
is being repaired

II. Follow up activities:


III. Advanced follow-ups:

1. Subject Verb agreement
a. Power point presentation

Homework activities:

* good for ESL