Stage 1: Present examples  

Write these sentences on the board. 

  • Look at the sky. 
  • Look at the blue sky. 
  • The sky is beautiful. 

Ask: ‘What do you notice about these sentences?’ 

To help learners, you could: 

  • underline blue and beautiful 
  • ask specific questions, e.g. What difference do the words ‘blue’ and ‘beautiful’ make?  

Now write these sentences on the board.  

  • At night we see stars in the sky. 
  • Look at the starry sky. 

Ask: ‘What do you notice about the underlined words?’ 

Ask specific questions such as: 

  • What type of word is ‘star’?  
  • What happens to ‘star’ in the second sentence? What does it do? 

Stage 2: Take feedback 

Check understanding. Ask learners to give feedback on what they noticed from the examples. Here are some key points which you might want to share with them. 

  • Adjectives describe or give more information about nouns or pronouns. 
  • Adjectives can make sentences more interesting.    
  • Adjectives usually come before the noun (‘blue sky’/‘starry cloud’).  
  • Adjectives can also come after a linking verb (‘is’, ‘am’, ‘are’, ‘was’, ‘were’), e.g. is beautiful.  
  • Adjectives can be formed from nouns (e.g. ‘star’ – ‘starry’). Other common adjective suffixes include ‘-able’, ‘-ful’, ‘-ic’, ‘-ous’, ‘-ive’, ‘-less’ and ‘-y’. 

Stage 3: Use the grammar 

a. Cut-ups 

Give each learner a strip of paper and tell them to write a simple sentence on it, e.g. The bowl is on the table or The boy is at the shop. Tell them to swap their sentence with another learner.  

Say: ‘Underline the nouns in your new sentence. Now add one or two adjectives to the sentence, e.g. The red bowl is on the broken table.’ Learners share their new sentences. 

For fun you can ask learners to pass the sentences on and add one or two more adjectives. From this you can do some feedback on correct adjective order, e.g. size, age, shape, colour, material. 

b. Pass the ball 

Stand in a circle. Pass a ball or a piece of crumpled paper around the circle. Each person uses an adjective to describe the ball, e.g. The ball is heavy. The adjective does not need to be true – they should use their imagination. Learners mime their adjective, e.g. hot, cold, light, smelly.  

c. Describe yourself 

Learners bring a photo or draw a picture of themselves. They write a description of the picture using as many adjectives as possible. Display the pictures and read the descriptions. The class guesses which picture is being described. 



Adjective: A part of speech which describes nouns and pronouns, e.g. quick, good, important. 

Feedback: Information about how or how well a learner has done something. 

Linking verbs: A verb which connects the subject with a word that provides information about it (e.g. a condition or relationship). Linking verbs do not show action, e.g. The eggs smell bad/You look tired/They seem happy. 

Suffixes: A group of letters added to the end of a word to make a new word, such as ‘-ness’, ‘-ly’, ‘-ive’.