written by: Pamela Martin
• edited by: Amanda Grove
• updated: 9/11/2012
Let this elementary lesson plan for pronouns lead your students to a better understanding of subject and object pronouns and their use.
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For such short and common words, pronouns create more problems for students than almost any other area of English grammar. With this elementary lesson plan for pronouns, you can help clear up some of the confusion about subject and object pronouns.
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Students will understand that pronouns are words that replace nouns in a sentence.
Students will recognize common pronouns in context.
Students will differentiate between subject and object pronouns and will use them correctly in their own writing.
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Provide students with sentences that would read better with pronouns. For example, offer students: Bob put dry food in Bob’s dog’s food dish and then the dog gobbled Bob’s dog’s food.
Ask students why these sentences seem awkward. Elicit their suggestions for improving them.
Use a student suggestion or provide an edited version of the sentences, depending on the brainstorming results. You might suggest: Bob put dry food in his dog’s food dish and then the dog gobbled its food.
Underline the pronouns in the revised sentences and explain that these are called personal pronouns. Provide the Pronouns Cheat Sheet chart from the media gallery and allow students to complete the Circle the Pronouns individual activity before continuing the group instruction.
Explain that you will be studying two types of pronouns in this lesson: subject pronouns and object pronouns.
Tell students that a simple rule to begin with is that subject pronouns will be in the subject of the sentence, while object pronouns will be in the predicate.
Discuss the subject and object pronoun chart with students. Ask them to create sentences that include one of each type of pronoun to share with the class.
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Individual and Paired Practice
Circle the Pronouns
Provide students with copies of reading passages or newspaper articles. Ask them to circle all the pronouns in the piece, using their Pronoun Cheat Sheet charts.
Give each student a sheet of brightly colored copy paper. They should fold the paper in half lengthwise (hot-dog style). They will cut the top layer to the fold to make two flaps. On one, they print “Subject Pronouns," and they write “Object Pronouns" on the other. Under the flaps, students list the appropriate examples and add sentences using each correctly.
Give pairs or small groups of students sets of cards on which you have printed sentences that need pronouns. Allow them to use the cards with a board game of their choice by answering the question correctly before spinning, rolling dice, or otherwise taking a turn by the game rules.
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Check student understanding by evaluating their use of pronouns in writing assignments. If you find that students are having difficulties, reteach the ideas in context by using the examples from student writing after removing identifying information from the examples.
Do not attempt to force “correct" pronoun usage in casual conversation, but reinforce it by expecting it when students are making formal oral presentations.
After this elementary lesson plan for pronouns, your students will be experts at replacing nouns in their writing.
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Teaching Pronouns in the Classroom: <http://www.superduperinc.com/handouts/pdf/173%20Teaching%20Pronouns.pdf>