April 4, 2021

Regular or Irregular – Past Tense Verbs Take a lot of practice!

Regular or Irregular – Past Tense Verbs Take a lot of practice!



Hello Teachers!
Today we are talking about verbs, past tense verbs in English!


English regular past tense verbs are straightforward, right?  

You simply add an “-ed” at the end and you’re done. For example: “The girl played ball.”   

Sounds simple, but it can be sticky!

When it comes to English past tense verbs it isn’t so easy.  First, the tricky parts of regular past tense verbs are the 3 different sounds that ‘ed’  makes at the end of a word. The 3 sounds of -ed are /t/, /id/, and /d/.  Native speakers figure out these different ending sounds naturally, but with English language learners, these sounds need to be taught and practiced.






Irregular past tense verbs are not as straightforward.  


Irregular past tense verbs follow different rules.  Irregular verbs do not add “-ed” at the end. They get modified completely. The present tense sentence of “I tell you a story.” becomes in the past tense, “I told you a story.”

But hold onto your past tense verbs!

The only method for learning irregular past tense verbs is to hear them, say them, write them, and read them so many times that it becomes natural to one as a speaker.  There are no specific rules regarding conjugating the tenses of irregular verbs.

Wait!  

That is not all, there are other words that do not change at all in the present and past like ‘cut’ and ‘put’.  Furthermore, other words may not change at all in writing but are pronounced differently depending on the tense.  An example of this is, “I read a book” in the present tense and “I read a book” in the past tense.  When writing nothing changes, but when pronouncing it IS different.

Games are engaging and effective strategies for elementary teachers with English language learners.  


Games allow students to practice the past tense in a fun and lively way. Past tense verb games are great methods towards mastery for young students to become fluent with regular and irregular past tense verbs.


Happy Teaching!




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