How to Use Fun Activities to Help Kids Learn Participles

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Participles are defined as a verb that is used as an adjective. They usually end in -ed or -ing and can be somewhat confusing for children or those who are studying English as a second language. Help your kids out by doing something fun and unique to boost their understanding and help them have fun at the same time.

Explain the concept of participles clearly to children before engaging in games. Use plenty of examples in sentences, and test their knowledge by asking them to explain what a participle is or identify one in a sentence.

Give the children the lyrics to a popular song. Ask them to identify all of the participles within the song by circling them or underlining them.

Set up a game for the kids. Divide them into three or four teams, and either have them make up sentences with participles in them or ask them to identify participles in a prewritten text. The students who come up with the most participles (used correctly) in a given time period will win.

Give them a link to the Past Participle Game at for homework or to use during a technology portion of the class. Ask the students to keep track of their progress, or have a parent sign off on a worksheet to make sure the students are keeping up.

Ask students to create a short play or skit involving participles. Group the students together (no more than six students to a group), and give the students a list of words for ideas and then give them 15 to 20 minutes to think up a skit. Have students deliver their play, and ask the others to keep track of the participles used.

Writing since 2008, Fiona Miller has taught English in Eastern Europe and also teaches kids in New York schools about the Holocaust. Her work can be found on, ConnectED and various other Web sites. Miller holds a B.A. in French from Chapman University and an M.A. in educational theater from New York University.