Grammar lessons can be daunting as each concept has too many rules and techniques to follow. When it comes to the concept of gerunds and infinitives, it often creates confusion about how to identify them along with their correct usage.
Gerunds are identified by the letters ‘-ing’ following the root verb, such as dancing, singing, etc., whereas the infinitives are best identified by the word ‘to-’ before the main verb, both of which form the major part of everyday conversations. Theoretical understanding does justice to the topic however, a little fun goes a long way in addressing the core issues students might face with the concept.
Grammar games and activities are popularly known for adding humor to teaching. That is why these fun gerund and infinitive games and activities are a treasure for the captivating attention of students. With the usage of these games and activities, teachers and educators can better introduce the concepts, rules, and sentence formation techniques. In this article, you can find thoughtful games and activities that help students discover the topic comprehensively.
To or ing? Interesting games and activities for gerund and infinitive
To ease the learning process and help students not only grasp faster but retain the concepts learned, given below are some light-hearted and interactive gerunds and infinitives games and activities to explore and incorporate in the lesson plans.
1. Subject or Object?
Gerunds are used in different ways and can act as subject or object in a statement. This game allows students to understand the difference between both.
- For this game, divide the students into teams of 2 members each.
- As the game begins, use different sentences for students to identify whether the gerund is used as a subject or an object.
- For example, you can use the following sentences.
- Painting is a good hobby.
- Sharon loves dancing in the hall.
- In the first sentence, painting is used as a subject while dancing is used as an object.
- The team with the maximum number of right answers wins the game.
As this game involves recognizing gerunds as a subject or an object, it helps students understand the basic rule of placing them. It also improves collaboration among learners.
2. The Verb Analysis!
Infinitives are best known by the inclusion of the word “to“; however, this rule does not apply similarly to all verbs. This game focuses on clarifying the specific verbs and creating awareness about the subject matter.
- For this game, divide students into teams of 3 members each
- Write many verbs on cards and put these cards in a box.
- Make sure to use a combination of verbs that can have the inclusion of the word “to” before and after the word.
- Now, each team picks one card and instantly replies if the word to can be placed before or after the verb
- For example, if the verb is promised, then a sentence can be formed by using the infinitive after the word, i.e. I promise to return your book.
- Similarly, an infinitive can be placed before the verb if the verb is ‘get‘, i.e. I tried to get the tickets for the show.
- You may also ask students to form sentences and the team to have maximum correct answers, win the game.
Such a game helps students understand the practical placement of infinitives thereby clarifying their doubts. It also strengthens their grammatical understanding.
3. The Conversion Game!
Gerunds and infinitives often form an important part of the statement. This game allows students to fully explore the conversion from gerunds to infinitives and vice versa.
- For this game, every student gets a time of 1 minute and has to convert maximum sentences during this time.
- Write many sentences on chits and put them in a bowl.
- Every student picks a chit and reads it aloud
- If the sentence has gerunds, it should be converted to infinitives and vice versa.
- For example, if the sentence is – Pinto loves to sing then the converted sentence shall be – Pinto loves singing.
- The student who gives the maximum number of correct answers wins the game.
Sentence-building activities like this develop the critical thinking abilities of students. It also helps with differentiating between the two concepts smartly.
4. Identify Who?
It is important for students to understand the difference between the two concepts. They might get confused and this activity allows students to understand the concepts easily.
- For this activity, involve students in creative work.
- Ask them to make two placards with the titles – Gerunds or Infinitives.
- Now, read out any statement that includes either of them.
- After the sentence, students can raise anyone’s placard based on their understanding of the concept.
- You can use similar sentences below.
- Kiara often likes dancing with her sister.
- John promised to see me after school.
- You can also explain to students who may pick the wrong placards and clarify their doubts right at that moment.
As students pick their choices purely through listening to the statements, they are more likely to develop active listening skills. It also empowers their learning and builds confidence in the subject matter.
5. Draw it Right!
As the name suggests, this game is all about letting students unleash their creativity by drawing. It helps students firmly connect with the idea and clarifies their doubts.
- For this game, have two different bowls: one bowl has verbs and the other has two options – Gerund and Infinitive.
- Now, divide the students into teams of 2 members each.
- Each team gets a time limit of 2 minutes to play the game.
- One student picks the verb while the other is responsible for sentence formation.
- Here’s the twist, The student who knows the verb has to draw it on the board and the other student has to guess the verb.
- The other student then picks any one of two options and forms a sentence accordingly.
- For example, if the verb is cooking, a plate, juice, or a cake can be drawn.
- Similarly, if the student picks gerund, the sentence can be – My mother enjoys cooking her favorite pasta.
- The team that gets the maximum number of correct sentences wins the game.
Guessing through drawing is truly an interesting opportunity to understand the concept beyond theoretical knowledge. It helps students decode the essence of the subject matter and even be quick to win.
6. Flip Bingo
Bingo is a fun activity however, this activity is about a strange twist. Students get an opportunity to learn about both concepts simultaneously.
- For this activity, make a table on the blackboard with 5 rows and 5 columns.
- Make sure each box has a gerund or an infinitive in all different forms.
- Now, write statements on a sheet of paper with a blank where any of these words shall complete the statement.
- Divide the students into teams with each team having 2 members.
- Teams need to read the statement and circle the answer in their specified color chalks.
- The activity ends when the entire bingo is all circled and the statements find their correct answers.
Students get an opportunity to filter their understanding when they have too many options in hand. Such an activity ensures that every student gets enough time to think, evaluate, and circle the correct answers.
7. Look and Guess
Most of the infinitives can be learned well when they are practiced with sentences. This activity allows students to explore the topic in a creative way.
- For this activity, ask students to sit in a circle facing inward.
- Now, write different infinitives on placards which are easy to act on.
- Put the placards in a bowl and play music while students pass a ball.
- As the music stops, the activity begins with the student who has the ball.
- The student picks an infinitive and nominates the next student for the guessing challenge.
- The other student needs to draft a sentence with the infinitive and then pick the placard.
- For example, if the infinitive is to eat then the students can act like he/she is eating.
- Similarly, the other student spontaneously thinks of a sentence which could be – I really love to eat chocolate brownies.
With the inclusion of various infinitives and sentence building, students also learn how to identify more and more verbs. The essence of acting adds fun and everyone gets an equal chance to participate.
8. The Gerund Poster!
This innovative activity is the one that broadens the mindset of students towards the subject of gerunds. All you need is to print many different pictures and put them in a box.
- For this activity, students need to get glue and a large mount board.
- They need to get to the box and select any of the pictures that they feel fit the gerund.
- After this, they need to create a gerund poster that has relatable images.
- For example, if the image is of a girl dancing, they need to write the gerund dancing right below the picture.
- Every picture can be a verb however, students need to identify those gerunds and write them in the ing form.
- Invite an open discussion once everyone has made the poster.
The inclusion of such visual perception activities and games often helps students recognize the core of the concept effectively. It builds a strong connection with gerunds and their practical usage.
Gerunds and infinitives are a part of reading as well as writing. When students know the application of these concepts, they can better form sentences and improvise their overall verbal communication capabilities. Using games and activities is one of the helpful ways to strengthen understanding, clarify doubts, and identify the loopholes in delivering the subject matter. The above-mentioned games and activities create a cheerful atmosphere and allow students to learn in a collaborative environment.