Language Arts, Writing, Grammar
Grade 3- 5
Students learn how to use adjectives and descriptive phrases to complement and enhance their writing.
Tell students that when they are writing, sometimes a simple, complete sentence is all that is needed. However, at other times it is a good idea to give more details.
Give them this example: Lorna saw a dog. When you read this sentence, you probably imagine some kind of dog. If all of your classmates drew pictures of the dog, each one would be very different.
Lorna saw a monstrous, hairy dog, with legs that were three-feet long, and it drooled as it trotted directly toward her! When you read this sentence, you have a much better idea of what the dog looked like. Descriptive language and additional information about the subject is very useful and makes the sentence more interesting.
A word that helps describe something is an adjective. There are three types of adjectives.
- Demonstrative Adjectives: These point out. They answer the question, Which one(s)? Examples: this, that, these, those - I like this dress. Those cookies look delicious.
- Common Adjectives: These describe the subject in a general way. They answer the question, What kind of? or How many? Examples: soft, warm, six, blue, sunny, tired, tall. The building is tall. The kitten is soft.
- Proper Adjectives: These are made from proper nouns and are always capitalized. They answer the question, What kind of? Examples: Irish, Martian, African American, Native American, Elizabethan - I love French cheese! There are many Japanese cars.
Go over the following sentences with students. Ask them to identify the adjectives in the sentences. Then have them identify the questions that the adjectives answer. (What kind of? How many? Which one?)
1.I don't like this sandwich.
2.The old man came to the door.
3.Most French students speak English.
4.We're learning a Scottish dance tomorrow.
5.The yellow flowers are wilting.
6.I have three brothers.
7.For dinner tonight, they're serving a delicious spinach casserole.
8.Give me your dollar, and I'll give you my comic book.
9.Tim doesn't want that soft pear.
10.Watch out for the mean dog down the street.
11.My clueless brother threw away my homework.
12.Those black shoes are too small.
Enchanted Enhancements activity page (one per student)