Simple Verb Tense: Lesson for Kids

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  • 0:03 Simple Verb Tenses
  • 1:05 Present Tense Verbs
  • 2:29 Past Tense Verbs
  • 3:12 Future Tense Verbs
  • 3:44 Irregular Verb Tenses
  • 4:27 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Tawnya Eash

Tawnya has a master's degree in early childhood education and teaches all subjects at an elementary school.

Run! Fetch! Play! Did you know that these words are verbs? All wonderful writers use verbs in their sentences. Let's jump into this lesson to look at simple verb tenses and see examples you can use to become a wonderful writer yourself!

Simple Verb Tenses

Try to decide if the following story already happened, is going on now, or will happen in the future:

My family bought a new puppy! We named him Cuddles because he wanted to be petted and held a lot. My brother and I played with him outside. He loved to fetch his toy. We tried to teach him how to bring it back when we called him, but he didn't listen. Mom and Dad said it may take some time before Cuddles could be trained. We played and practiced every day. Everyone was so excited that Cuddles joined our family.

The verbs in this story tell you the events happened in the past.

Verbs are the part of the sentence that show action. They tell you what the subject of the sentence is doing. Verbs in simple tense tell you when the action happened. Simple tense can change the action to past, present, or future. Let's look at some examples!

  • Past tense verbs end in '-ed' unless they are irregular.
  • Present tense verbs can end in '-s', '-es', have no endings, or can be irregular
  • Future tense is indicated by placing 'will' before the verb

Present Tense Verbs

A verb in the present tense shows you that the action is going on now. The verb may end in an '-s,' '-es,' '-ies,' or have no ending at all. Here are some rules and examples of regular verbs used in the present tense:

Rule #1: Keep the verb the same

Let's look at the verbs: 'walk,' 'play', 'fetch,' 'train' to practice in a couple of example sentences:

  • We walk Cuddles on the sidewalk every night.
  • People train dogs to play fetch and roll over.

Rule #2: Add '-s' to the verb

Let's look at the verbs 'walk,' 'play,' 'train' and practice again in some examples using this rule:

  • My sister plays in the backyard with Cuddles.
  • Mom trains Cuddles to sit for a dog treat.

Rule #3: Add '-es' to the verb when the verb ends in 'ch,' 'sh,' 's,' 'x,' or 'z'

Some examples of verbs include 'fetch,' 'push,' 'toss.' Let's look at some example sentences:

  • My dad tosses the ball really far!
  • Cuddles fetches the ball.

Rule #4: Change 'y' to 'i' and add '-es' when the verb ends in consonant 'y.'

Some examples of these verbs include 'try,' 'fly,' and 'bury.' Sample sentences include:

  • Cuddles tries to jump on us when he gets excited.
  • My sister flies home from school to play with the puppy.

Past Tense Verbs

A verb in the past tense shows that an action already took place. It describes an action that happened in the past. Here are some rules and examples of making verbs past tense:

Rule #1: Add '-ed' to the end of the verb

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