Teaching sentence structure is the first step in improving students’ writing skills. As with any topic, you can teach sentence structure by first teaching the basic components of grammar. It is important for students to have a basic understanding of the parts of a sentence and their relationship to each other before learning about sentence structure. Once you have taught these basic grammar concepts, you can begin teaching sentence structure using activities and games.
Teach the basics How to Teach Sentence Structure
You can start the lesson by explaining how words work. Use some fun activities to show how the words are related to each other. For example, you can have students act out short sentences.
Teach students parts of speech: nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, conjunctions, prepositions, and interjections. Use the examples you used earlier and have students identify different parts of speech.
Then teach them about the topic and the predicate. Help them divide the sentence into parts and identify the characteristics of each part.
Teach different sentence structures
Once students have learned different elements in a sentence, you can begin to teach different sentence structures. You can use the things students already know to teach this. Ask students to write some simple sentences. Then divide them into a few groups and have them identify different parts of the speech in the sentences they have written. Have them take note of the order of the different parts of the speech and group the sentences according to it.
He ate rice. (noun + verb + object)
This flower’s are beautiful.(noun + verb + adjective)
Write these sentence structures on the board and explain
Using games and activities
Besides, you can also use different games to make the lesson more clear and interesting.
Complete the story
Ask the first student to make a short sentence with two words. Then the next student can add another word (adjective, adverb). Students continue to add elements to the sentence to keep it meaningful. You can use this game to teach compound and complex sentences as well. For instance,
- Mary sleeps.
- Mary is sleeping soundly.
- Maria sleeps soundly on the couch.
- Maria sleeps soundly on the couch every afternoon.
- Mary sleeps soundly on the couch every afternoon, but couldn’t sleep yesterday.
- Mary sleeps soundly on the couch every afternoon, but yesterday she couldn’t sleep because she had visitors.
Organize the scrambled sentences
Write scrambled sentences on the board and ask them to complete them. You can divide the class in two and have a competition to see who organizes the maximum sentences in the minimum time.
the – back – was – baby – she – lying – on
- The baby was lying on his back.
luck – was – day – today – she
- Today was his lucky day.
Write an equal number of nouns, verbs, and modifiers on the cards. Give each student a card. Let the students walk around the class and find two other students who have a verb and a modifier to make a meaningful sentence.
Make sentences using students
Write different words on cards. Give each student a card. Ask them to hold the cards in front of them. When you read a sentence, students have to quickly organize their positions to make that sentence. Try different sentences.
These games and activities will make learning more fun and help students memorize the lesson better.