Any topic can be used to teach grammar. I am going to use information about the Saguaro cactus to teach verb recognition.Please know, that grammar hasn’t been one of my favorite subjects, but Marian Anders’ book, “My Dog Bites the English Teacher: Practical Grammar Made Quick and Easy“ is changing my mind.
Marian has tips and tricks that make it easy. With her permission, the following is a quote from her book, page 2.
“Most people were taught to find the verb in a sentence by looking for the action word. Sometimes that method works, but other times it doesn’t. The time change method is much easier, and best of all, it always works.”
I like things that ALWAYS WORK. The next quote tells you how to change the time of any sentence.
“Change the time of the sentence by saying, yesterday, every day, and tomorrow at the beginning of the sentence. When you change the time of the sentence, the verb will change automatically.”
OK, let’s try Marian’s Time Change Method for identifying verbs:
[FYI: Saguaro is pronounced “sah-wah-roh.” ]
1. The Saguaro is a large cactus.
Yesterday the Saguaro was a large cactus.
Every day the Saguaro is a large cactus.
Tomorrow the Saguaro will be a large cactus.
Answer: The word “is” changed, that makes “is” the verb.
That was easy, let’s try another sentence.
2. It takes a Saguaro about 75 years to grow a side arm.
Yesterday it took the Saguaro about 75 years to grow a side arm.
Every day it takes the Saguaro about 75 years to grow a side arm.
Tomorrow it will take the Saguaro about 75 years to grow a side arm.
WOW!!! I just wrote an English lesson. I assure you the editor of my science books will not believe it. I am going to send this link to her.