Using Verbs and Adverbs in Sentences - What Are Verbs and Adverbs? How To Use Verbs and Adverbs.

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What is a verb?

A verb is a word in a sentence that tells the reader what action is being done.

Verbs are sometimes called 'doing' words or 'action' words. In order to create a sentence is must have a subject and a verb in it, without these two elements it is classed as a phrase.

For example:
The cat ran up the tree.
This is a sentence because it contains a subject (the cat) and a verb (ran).

Children need to know what a verb is and be able to recall a variety of verbs when writing. Using a variety of verbs makes writing more interesting. A thesaurus can be used to find different verbs that have a similar meaning.

For example:
words that mean the same as 'ran' are: sprinted, jogged or scampered

Many children like to re-use the same words over and over, reasons for this may be:

  • that they know how to spell the word
  • are scared to use new words in case they spell them incorrectly or use them incorrectly
  • they don't have to think
  • they can finish their work quicker

However it is essential to encourage children to use a variety of words that a fit for purpose.

What is an adverb?

An adverb is a word that describes, gives more information, or modifies a verb.
It can tell the reader how, where or when the action is being done.

Adverbs of Manner

The adverbs describe 'how' the verb is done and end in an 'ly' most of the time.

For example:
The cheetah quickly leapt up and chased the zebra.
'quickly' is the adverb 'leapt' is the verb
The adverb tells us how the cheetah leapt up and so it has modified the verb.

Other examples of manner adverbs include: slowly, happily, grumpily, greedily, desperately, unknowingly, brightly...

Adverbs of Place

These adverbs describe 'where' the verb (or action) took place.

For example:
The cat sat outside the front door.
'outside' is the adverb 'sat' is the verb
The adverb in this sentence is telling us where the cat sat.

Other examples of place adverbs include: inside, there, here, near, away, nearby ...

Adverbs of Time

These adverbs describe 'when' the verb took place.

For example:
The postman delivered the letter yesterday.
'yesterday' is the adverb 'delivered' is the verb
The adverb in this sentence is telling us when the postman delivered the letter.

Other examples of time adverbs include: today, later, afterwards, before, now, then, soon, already, tonight ...

Free Verbs & Adverbs Worksheet

Click on the link at the bottom of this page to download a free verbs and adverbs worksheet.
This worksheet will help KS2 children write more interesting sentences. It will encourage children to use adverbs to describe how something is being done.

The KS2 English worksheet will reinforce what a verb is and what an adverb is.

Children are given a verb and an adverb, they need to use these words to write a sentence.
Using adverbs within a sentence creates more interest and helps explain how something is being done.
Children need to be encouraged to use adverbs regularly.

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