Action Words: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Molly Margeson

Molly has taught SAT preparatory material and courses for the past two years and has a master's degree in English with a focus in creative writing.

From the moment we get out of bed in the morning we are constantly doing something. When we put these actions to words we need to use action verbs. These action verbs allow us to tell others about the things we've done or the things we are doing.

Action Words

Imagine having to tell your mom or dad what you did during the day without using any action words. This would be pretty hard to do and would most likely just confuse your parents. Action words, also known as action verbs, are words we use to describe things like our movements and activities. You may not notice it, but we use action words in every sentence we speak or write. Whether we are explaining a game that we played, a story that we read, or perhaps an amazing snack that we ate, we have to use action words!

Not only do verbs add actions to our sentences, but they can also define specifically what that action is. The word 'stroll' and the word 'run' are both words that tell what I am doing with my legs, but one is a lot less quick! If I am 'strolling' then I am moving slower and taking my time. If I am 'running' then I am probably moving very quickly.

Let's look at another example of using specific verbs to change a sentence.

'The large man in a purple suit sang an opera.'

'The large man in a purple suit bellowed an opera.'

Both sentences tell us about the same man in the same purple suit, but the difference comes to what he is doing. In the first sentence the man is singing. This could be loudly or this could be softly. But in the second sentence we see that the man 'bellowed' which means to make a deep, loud roar. Our purple suited man is singing an opera in both sentences but when we change the verb, how he is singing is very different.

The large man in a purple suit bellowed an opera.
Man in purple suit

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