Verb Tense Lesson Plan

Instructor: Sharon Linde

Sharon has a Masters of Science in Mathematics

Are your students struggling with verb tense? This lesson plan uses an engaging video to identify the six verb tenses, then offers some guided practice on the topic. Check for understanding with a fun activity.

Learning Objectives

After this lesson, students will be able to:

  • distinguish between six verb tenses
  • identify incorrect and correct verb tense in text
  • explain common verb tense errors


  • 50 minutes


  • Paper
  • Markers

Key Vocabulary

  • Verb tense
  • Past tense
  • Present tense
  • Future tense
  • Perfect tenses
  • Past perfect tense
  • Present perfect tense
  • Future perfect tense

Curriculum Standards

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.8.1

Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.8.1.b

Form and use verbs in the active and passive voice.


  • Activate prior knowledge and introduce the topic by writing the sentence ''I sit.'' on the board. Ask students to copy the sentence, then write it in past and future tense.
  • Check answers and discuss verb tense.
  • Next, start the video lesson Identifying Errors of Verb Tense.
  • Pause at 0:48 and define terms. Check for understanding and discuss common verb tense errors.
  • Have students make an entry in their writing notebooks titled 'Verb Tense' and make a six-column chart with each of the verb tenses as a title, then restart the video. Students should take notes in their charts during the lesson.
  • Pause if necessary to allow students to copy definitions and/or examples.
  • Pause at 3:30 and check for comprehension by giving examples of sentences and asking students which tense they are. Ask students to create their own sentences in each tense, then resume the lesson.
  • Pause at 7:38 and ask:
    • What's the most important thing to do to avoid verb tense errors?
    • Why shouldn't writers switch back and forth between verb tenses?
    • When is it okay to switch verb tenses in writing?
  • Have students edit the sentence ''My second grade teacher was the best teacher I ever had, and she had inspired me. She keeps encouraging me to work harder. She helped me become a better student.''
  • Play the Lesson Summary, make sure students have notes and a solid understanding of concepts, then move on to the activity.

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