November 2, 2015
by Ms. Kara Smith

Lesson plan

Command an Exclamation!

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Students will be able to identify sentences as commands or exclamations and their corresponding ending marks.

(10 minutes)
  • Pretend that you are having trouble putting a letter you wrote to your friend into an envelope.
  • Ask your class to help by telling you what to do. As students guide you with commands, give exclamations of how you are confused, frustrated, or happy about the instructions. If the students don't give exact direction, act sad or confused. If they give great direction, express happiness.
  • Ask your students to remember the commands they gave you. Write the sentences on the board and tell your students to reflect on the types of sentences they were saying.
  • Request that your students remember the sentences you were saying. Write the sentences on the board and ask everyone to reflect on the types of sentences you were saying.
(10 minutes)
  • Explain that the sentences the students gave to explain how to put the letter into the envelope were commands.
  • Write the definition of commands, and display the sentence strips you created. Ask your students to analyze why each sentence you wrote is a command.
  • Describe a command as a sentence that tells someone to do something. Explain that it typically ends with a period.
  • Have your students turn their attention back to the sentences you were saying. Ask: Are these commands? Why or why not?
  • After some discussion, explain that these are exclamatory sentences. Explain that exclamatory sentences express feelings and end with exclamation marks.
(5 minutes)
  • Ask your students to stand quietly behind their desks for a game of Simon Says and Simon Feels.
  • For example, call out: Simon Says hop on one foot. Watch as students do the action.
  • Choose students to tell you if they just acted out a command or an exclamation.
  • Next, call out another sentence: Simon feels excited!
  • Ask your students if this sentence sounds more like a command or an exclamation of feeling.
(5 minutes)

Have your class write sentences on sentence strips to label as a command or exclamation. Tell them not to show the punctuation. For example:

  • This is a wonderful day
  • Come to the park
  • I'm having so much fun


  • Instruct advanced students to write a command and an exclamatory sentence by themselves. Introduce these students to the term imperative sentence, which are command sentences.


  • Give your students pictures that show a character working on something, such as building a house, and a character expressing happiness or sadness. Ask these students to label the pictures with command or exclamation.
(5 minutes)
  • Encourage your students to share their sentence strips with a partner, adding in the appropriate end punctuation. Give them time to debrief their thinking and compare answers.
(5 minutes)
  • Ask students to volunteer to give silly commands to the class for a fun closing to the lesson.

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