16 Strategies to Help Learners Who Do Not Use Correct Verb Tenses While Writing

Are you looking for strategies to help students who do not use correct verb tenses while writing? If so, keep reading.

1. Give the student examples of verb tenses for those verbs most commonly used incorrectly, and have the student keep the examples for reference.

2. Create a list of those verbs the student most commonly uses incorrectly. This list will become the guide for learning activities in verb tenses.

3. Draft an agreement with the student stipulating what behavior is required (e.g., using correct verb tenses) and which reinforcement will be implemented when the agreement has been met.

4. Select a peer to model the correct use of verb tenses for the student.

5. Teach the student what changes must be made in a verb to indicate when an event happened (e.g., past, present, future).

6. Get the student to finish written worksheets in which they must supply the correct verb tense to go in the sentence (e.g., “Yesterday I __ to my house.”).

7. Get the student to pick out the correct verb tense on multiple-choice worksheets (e.g., “Tomorrow she __ [ate, eat, will eat] her supper.”).

8. Provide the student specific verb tenses and have them supply appropriate sentences to go with each (e.g., played: “John played at my house last night.”).

9. Get the student to write sentences with given verbs in past, present, and future tenses.

10. Get the student to listen to examples of incorrect verb tenses and then find each error and correct it.

11. Give the student the appropriate learning materials to finish the task (e.g., pencil with eraser, paper, dictionary, handwriting sample, etc.). Make sure the student has only those appropriate learning materials on the desk.

12. Show a sequence of sentences and ask the student to change the tense from past to present, present to future, etc.

13. Provide the student a sequence of sentences (both oral and written) and ask them to indicate whether each is grammatically correct.

14. Ask the parents to encourage the student’s correct use of verb tenses by praising them when grammar is appropriate.

15. Discuss the importance of correct written communication and what would happen if the verb tenses were used incorrectly (e.g., confusion as to when an event took place).

16. Consider using one of the apps on one of our best writing apps lists:

The Tech Edvocate’s List of 31 Grammar & Writing Apps, Tools & Resources

Ten Apps to Help Learners Develop Writing Skills

10 of the Best Grammar and Writing Apps for Elementary School Learners

11 of the Best Grammar and Writing Apps for High School Learners

10 of the Best Grammar and Writing Apps for Middle School Learners

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