Lesson plan

Pantomime: An Adverb Game

Act it out! Your students will have fun guessing and acting out adverbs in this engaging grammar game. As you progress through this adverb lesson plan, your students will have the opportunity to identify and use a variety of adverbs.
Grade Subject View aligned standards

Students will be able to identify and use adverbs as modifiers to express time, place, manner, degree, and frequency.

(5 minutes)
  • Write a sentence on the board that contains an adverb (e.g. The students laughed loudly.)
  • Underline the word loudly and label it as an adverb. Explain that in this sentence, the adverb answers the question, "How did the students laugh?" Remind students that adverbs can answer other questions too, such as when, where, or how much.
  • Tell students that an adverb is a descriptive word that modifies or qualifies a verb, adjective, or another adverb. Adverbs express a time, place, manner, degree, or frequency.
  • Write the definition on the board.
(10 minutes)
  • Using a document camera, display the Adverb Word Bank worksheet.
  • Go through each section with students and add words to fill in the word bank.
  • Use adverbs from each section to write example sentences on the board. (Examples: I go to school here. It will soon be time for recess. She writes her name neatly. He is incredibly happy. Sometimes Mom goes shopping). Underline the adverbs in each sentence.
  • As you write each example sentence, identify how the adverb is being used (i.e. to express time, place, manner, degree, or frequency).
(15 minutes)
  • Hand out five blank index cards to each student.
  • Tell students to write one adverb in large print on each index card, so that they have one of each type of adverb when they are finished (manner, time, place, degree, frequency).
  • Explain to the class, "We are going to play a game called 'pantomime'. You will use your five adverb cards to complete the sentences I write. But don't show anyone your cards. You will be invited to act out the sentence using the adverb of your choice. Your classmates will try to guess what adverb you are acting out."
  • Write a sentence on the board with a blank where the adverb would be (e.g. Henry ____ eats apples.)
  • Model how the game will work by acting out the sentence with an adverb in mind (e.g. Henry quickly eats apples.)
  • Ask students to guess what adverb you were acting out. When the adverb is guessed—or after five attempted guesses—write the correct adverb on the blank line and read the sentence aloud.
  • Write a new sentence on the board (e.g. People run ____ at the beach.)
  • Explain to students that they should find a card in their collection with an adverb that best completes the sentence.
  • Call a volunteer to come act out the sentence using their chosen card as the missing adverb (e.g. People run everywhere at the beach.)
  • Have the class guess the adverb based on the student's pantomime.
  • When the adverb is guessed—or after five attempted guesses—have the acting student write their word on the board to fill in the blank.
  • Repeat with several sentences so that multiple students have a chance to pantomime.
(10 minutes)
  • Hand out paper clips and have students clip their five word cards together.
  • Collect each set of student word cards and redistribute them so that students receive a new set of five adverbs.
  • Instruct students to use the word cards they receive to write sentences in a notebook or on scratch paper. Students should write one sentence for each of the five adverbs on their cards.
  • Remind students to underline the adverb in each sentence.
  • Circulate and offer support as needed.


  • Allow students to continue using the word bank as a tool during guided and independent practice.
  • Offer struggling students additional practice with a basic worksheet that includes pictures, such as the All About Adverbs: Verbs and Adverbs #1 worksheet.
  • Use this and other adverb lesson plans (such as the Adverb Basics lesson plan) to reinforce students' understanding of grammar.


  • Have students read a piece of text that is missing adverbs (such as the Adverbs Detectives to the Rescue worksheet), and ask them to add adverbs to make it more specific.
  • This adverb lesson plan can be followed up with a digital game that reinforces the skills learned, such as the Saturday Mystery: Choosing Adjectives and Adverbs game.
(10 minutes)
  • On the board, make a table with five columns. Label the columns with the five types of adverbs: manner, time, place, degree, and frequency.
  • Instruct students to come to the board and tape each of their five word cards into the appropriate columns.
  • Observe students as they place their cards to gauge understanding.
(5 minutes)
  • Write a simple sentence on the board that does not contain an adverb (e.g. Ms. Granger talks.)
  • Have students volunteer various adverbs that could be added to the sentence.
  • Ask students, "How does adding an adverb change this sentence?"
  • Discuss the purpose of adverbs and support students in understanding that adverbs make a sentence more specific.

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