Register Now


Compiled By: Mrs. G

What to make learning adjectives fun for your students? Try some of these engaging activities.

Posted by: TchrLady

When we learn about adjectives, I bring several silly hats to school (plastic fire hat, chef's hat, beanie cap, sombrero, etc.) and put them on one at a time. Then I have the kids tell me things about the hat. They come up with all kinds of words-funny, big, fat, hard, colorful, etc. We talk about how these words describe the hats. Then I have them make or draw their own hat and use describing words to write about it. You could put it up on a bulletin board and have the hats separate from the writing. Tell the kids that people in the hallway will have to read their writing and then figure out which hat is theirs. This helps them remember to be very descriptive! It's a fun activity!

View Thread
Artwork and Adjectives
Posted by: anita horton

Since we want students to use colorful language in their creative writing when they are describing details about settings, people, and things. It might be good for your students to draw a picture of a place,a character, or a thing that they might be writing about in a narrative ,etc. Then, have them write adjectives around the picture, and draw a line from the adjective to the specific detail in the picture they are decribing. This is a creative way to help them realize they must paint a clear picture for the audience who maybe reading their writing, and to let them practice putting those adjectives to good use in a fun way.

Posted by: tia

just did this with my sixth graders:

put on some interesting instrumental music--i found some african drum music on itunes--have students draw on paper (i told mine NO concrete pictures--only abstract).

then have a gallery stroll--give every child set of tiny post-its--at each artwork, they write one (positive, school-appropriate) adjective to describe the art and post on BACK of art.

then students get their own and (1) make sure all are adjectives--if not, discard and (2) rearrange to make a poem--then rewrite. i gave my kids the option of adding A FEW other words to make statements. (in my example, i used only the adjectives, but i made the title: Life in the Big City)

another idea: give them magazines and have them cut out pictures and then give the pictures adjectives. (ad for hair product: clean, shiny, brown, short....)

View Thread
Posted by: Mom4a_and_c

I just did a great lesson with my third graders on adjectives. I put a poster on the board of the Pittsburgh Steelers. (We live 50 miles south of this great team) You could use a poster of anythign the kids would be interested in from your area. I had the kids first list nouns. Players, football, stadium, coach, quarterback, etc. They had a ball reviewing nouns.

Then we made simple sentences.

The players will win.
The boy threw the football.
We went to the stadium. (You get the idea.)

Now I asked them to close their eyes I read them some of the sentences. What did they see? Was there enough information to have a clear picture of what is going on? What kind of player is it? What does the boy look like?

We decided to put more words to help us understand what kind or how many things were there.

The powerful players will win.
The tall boy threw the brown football.
We saw the new stadium.
One coach instructed the team.

Now we drew our own pictures relating to the Steelers. The had to list at least 10 adjective/noun phrases found in the picture.
-Large scoreboard.
-ten players
-winning team

The kids had a ball and it was one more way to tie in the Steeler Fever with my classroom.

Maybe you could get an idea from this. I hope it helps.

Marie from PA

View Thread
Posted by: Cheryl

One activity that I did that my third graders liked doing was a carousel brainstorm of adjectives. I put chart paper around the room with varied adj. categories like size, color, shape, sensory words(what something looks like, smells like, feels etc,)what kind, made of. The kids got into teams each with a special color of marker. When I gave the signal they would brainstorm as many adj. for that chart as possible in the time alloted (1-2 minutes) then at the signal, all would rotate until that had visited each chart. I used these brainstorms to create reference charts for them on the walls to use in their writing.

We also took boring basic sentences and used these adj. charts to expand them. They liked this as well and worked hard to come up with super sentences. They especially loved sharing them, you could post them as before and afters!

Mystery adjectives
Posted by: Mrs. G

The thing I do when teaching adjectives is put objects in a bag. I have a student come up one at a time and stick his hand in the bag. He may not look at the object that he has in his hand. He keeps his hand in the bag withthe object. He has to describe the object without looking at it. For example: If he has a pencil in his hand he could say it is long and slim with a point at the tip. It has rubber at the other end. Most of these are the color yellow.

Then the students try to guess what he has in his hand. Sometimes the student can't tell what he has so he has to do his very best to describe

what it feels like. When he thinks someone may have named the object he can pull it out to see. This can get a little crazy, but the kids love it. It really gets them thinking about describing words!

Posted by: Carol

For birthdays, my students give "adjective showers". We stand over someone and for 10-20 seconds we say positive adjectives to describe the birthday boy or girl. Kids love it. At the beginning of the year we all brainstorm them and students need to have 3-4 in their heads that they keep repeating until the time is up.

Posted by: M.

Some ideas...

1. Adjective game- Randomly pick a student to start. That person can say any adjective they can think of. The next person has to say an adjective that starts with the letter that the previous adjective ended with. You just keep going for a certain amount of time and see how many you can get.

2. Have the students make a list of all the adjectives they see in a story/novel the whole class is reading, in the newsapaer, in a magizine, etc. See how many different adjectives they come up with.

3. Bring in a stuffed animal or something from around the house (or even your classroom) and have students each say something that describes it without repeating what someone else said.

4. Bring in enough objects (or have each student bring in an item) and have them describe the item in a paragraph using adjectives. You could also have the students think of an item in the room (without telling anyone) and write a paragraph describing it specificly. Then assign the students partners and have them read each sentence slowly. The person who isn't reading, is trying to draw what the other person is describing. When they are finished, they can find out what object was being described and how they did when drawing it. The partners can switch roles and do the same thing again. At the conclusion of this activity, you can get the students together to talk about what was easy and what was difficult for them when they were trying to figure out what their partner was describing.

5. Have the students write a paper about somewhere they've been or some place they have seen. This could be right in your town or out of town, it doesn't matter. They can use adjectives to describe what they saw and their experience there.

Adjective Collage
Posted by: mjo

My sixth graders enjoyed making adjective collages: Have each student choose a noun picture - cat, dog, car, pizza, etc. to describe with adjectives. (They could draw the picture or cut it out of a magazine.) Then have the students cut out lots of adjectives that describe the noun. They glue the adjectives all around the picture to create a word collage. (We checked them first to make sure they were all adjectives...) I bought a box of sheet protectors and cut off the "hole" side. Each student placed their adjective collage inside a sheet protector before we hung them on the bulletin board - they looked "laminated" and we had no "lost" adjectives if they fell off!

Juicy Words
Posted by: Amy Lee

I call adjectives "juicy words" (a great tie in with the fruit). I brought peaches to school and had the students touch, taste and smell them blindfolded. They then had to use as many vivid "juicy" words to describe the peach. We talked about the need for detail in order to help a reader make a mind picture. I then read descriptions of the Aunts and had each student draw what they saw. We went back and reread the section off of a transparency and highlighted all the adjectives. Students then check to be sure they included something in their drawing that would help the reader include the adjective in their visualization.

Wanted posters...
Posted by: Bethany

I had my students find a picture on the Internet of an animal and create a "Wanted" poster on the computer using lots of adjectives to describe their animal. They also got to choose a reward if their animal was found.

They loved doing these! Very creative, too!

View Thread
Greeting Cards
Posted by: Mr. K

I have my fifth graders use greeting cards and find all of the adjectives within the card. I then have them create cards for already existing occasions. the cards must contain 5 adjectives.

View Thread
This is a _____ gift
Posted by: teach & learn

students stand in a circle and an imaginary package is passed around. Each student must come up with a different adjective to describe the gift. i.e.

This is a heavy gift.

This is a beautiful gift. etc

They cannot duplicate so it forces them to listen, anticipate and stretch their minds.

Better used to practice than introduce!!

View Thread
Describing Words
Posted by: cvt

We draw up lots of lists with adjectives in class. As PP said, pointing them out in a story or book helps, but you also may try to make a graphic organizer with the five senses. Take any object (ball, pig, flower, cookie, pretzel) and have the students describe it using their senses (sweet, pink, crunchy, etc.). Take those words and write them on the adjectives list for the students to consult later in their writing.
When I do read-alouds, I try to find stories with lots of adjectives, and I ask students to listen for them so we can write them down after the story.

View Thread
Here are two activities for adjectives.
Posted by: Mrs. O

For a homework project each child had to make posters of adjectives. For example, they could glue cottonballs to make the word soft or write spicy using pepper flakes. So far they have turned out really cute. Last year one of my boys had his dad give him a haircut so he could make the word hairy.:D

Today we made a peppermint out of a paperplate. I then gave them peppermint candy to help them fill out a 5 senses chart. After we talked about various adjectives to describe the word, I had them copy down 10 of their favorites onto the center of the paperplate. Finish up the plate by wrapping it with plastic wrap and tying ends with some ribbon. They really turned out cute.

I will try to take some pictures tomorrow and attach them.

View Thread
LA course
Posted by: Laura

An easy and fun lesson for third or fourth graders would be to get your hands on a copy of the book, Hairy, Scary, Ordinary: What is an Adjective? by Brian Cleary and use this as an introduction to adjectives. First read the book aloud. (It's a funny story about adjectives). Discuss what an adjective is. Have students come up to the board and make a list of adjectives on the board. Pass around a box with an object in it. Have the children use adjectives to describe what they are feeling. Repeat activity with another object if time permits. Find another book that has lots of adjectives. Read it to the class and have them raise their hands each time they here an adjective. Discuss any words that give them problems.
I don't know if this is what you're looking for, but I hope it helps. I know how tedious and mind-boggling it can be coming up with fun and practical lessons. Good luck!

descriptive words
Posted by: bertie

Have you ever tried the idea of writing a simple sentence on a sentence strip, cutting it up and working with the class to add more descriptive vocab to it? (write the additional words on another color of sentence strip for more impact).

For example "My cat is soft" could be built up to "My fat old black and white cat is round and soft as a teddy bear." The next lesson you could use the same simple sentence or another one. Your helper of the day could illustrate it. After modelling over many times, the children might be ready to each get their own sentence to build and illustrate.