I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Pronouns!
Students will be able to identify and use pronouns to complete sentences.
- Ask, "What is a noun?" With students, come up with a definition and write it on the board. (Example: A noun is a person, place, thing, or idea.)
- Divide a piece of chart paper into two columns. Label the left column nouns, leaving the right column blank.
- With student input, generate a list of nouns, and record the list on the left column of the chart paper. Be sure to include proper nouns, common nouns, and plural nouns (e.g. California, Alonso, chair, car, Mom and Dad, the dogs and cats).
- Using a proper noun from the list, write a sentence or two on the board with no pronouns. (Example: Alonso ran to get Alonso's ball from Alonso's room. Then Alonso went outside to play with Alonso's friends.)
- Ask students what they think about the sentence(s) you wrote on the board. Support them in understanding that it is repetitive.
- Explain that today we are going to learn about a part of speech called a pronoun, which we use to keep sentences from being too repetitive.
Explicit Instruction/Teacher modeling(10 minutes)
- Tell students that a pronoun is a word that takes the place of a noun in order to make a sentence less repetitive. Write the definition on the board, and offer students a few examples (e.g. I, she, or we).
- Rewrite the example sentence using pronouns. (Example: Alonso ran to get his ball from his room. Then he went outside to play with his friends.) Underline each pronoun in the sentence.
- Point out that the sentence sounds better with pronouns because it is not repetitive.
- Explain that it must be clear what noun is being replaced with a pronoun (i.e. Alonso). The noun being replaced is called the antecedent.
- Tell students that the pronoun must be in agreement with the antecedent in order for the sentence to make sense.
- Divide a piece of chart paper into thirds, horizontally.
- On the top third of the chart paper, write: A pronoun must agree in number.
- Explain that if an antecedent (noun) is singular, the pronoun that replaces it must also be singular (i.e. chair/it); if the antecedent is plural, the pronoun must also be plural (i.e. the girls/they).
- On the middle third of the chart paper, write: A pronoun must agree in gender.
- Tell students that if the antecedent is a feminine noun, the pronoun should be feminine (i.e. Sally/her); if the antecedent is masculine, the pronoun should be masculine (i.e. Dad/him). If the antecedent is gender neutral or non-binary, the pronoun should agree (i.e. they, their, them).
- On the final third of the chart paper, write: A pronoun must agree in point of view.
- Review the three points of view:
- First person: used to refer to yourself or yourself with others (I, me, my, mine, we, us, or ours)
- Second person: used to address someone (you, your, yours, or even y'all)
- Third person: used to talk about something or someone (she, her, hers, he, him, his, it, they, them, or theirs)
- Explain that whatever point of view the antecedent takes, the pronoun must agree (i.e. your name/me or bird/it).
Guided Practice(15 minutes)
- Refer to the list of nouns that you generated with the class. Label the second (blank) column pronouns.
- Have students suggest pronouns that could replace each noun on the list. Write the corresponding pronoun adjacent to each noun on the list.
- Hand out the Pick a Pronoun worksheet, and complete Part One together with the class, modeling how you would choose the correct pronoun for each sentence.
- Instruct students to complete Part Two with an elbow partner. Monitor students and provide guidance as needed.
Independent working time(10 minutes)
- Hand out the Pronoun Quiz worksheet.
- Have students complete the worksheet independently.
- Circulate and offer support as needed.
- Allow students to continue using the generated list of nouns and pronouns as a tool while they work independently.
- During guided practice, provide a list of nouns and pronouns to students in lieu of having them generate the list.
- As a model, complete some examples on the second worksheet before having students work independently.
- Offer students additional practice with a basic worksheet that includes pictures, such as the Get into Grammar: Pick the Pronoun worksheet.
- Use this and other pronoun lesson plans to reinforce struggling students' understanding of grammar, such as the Possessive Pronouns lesson plan.
- This pronoun lesson plan can be followed up with a lesson or worksheet that introduces definite, indefinite, possessive, and relative pronouns, such as the All Kinds of Pronouns: Introduction worksheet.
- Have students read a piece of text (such as the Reading Comprehension: The Kitten worksheet) and underline each pronoun that they find.
- On the board, write a sentence without pronouns. (Example: The dogs ran to the dogs' kennel.)
- On a personal whiteboard or scratch paper, have students write the pronoun that should replace the noun in the sentence. Instruct students to hold up their answer so that you can gauge their understanding.
- Call on a student to read the sentence aloud, replacing the noun with the pronoun in the appropriate spot. (Example: The dogs ran to their kennel.)
- Repeat with several sentences, alternating between common and proper nouns.
- Next, tell students that you'll be giving examples in which the pronoun is incorrect. (Example: Jacob asked its mom for milk.)
- Have students write the correct pronoun on their personal whiteboard before holding up their answer.
- Call on a student to read the sentence aloud with the correct pronoun.
- Repeat with several sentences.
Review and closing(3 minutes)
- Show students a short music video, like What are Pronouns by Flocabulary, to review the concepts that were covered in the lesson.