Verbs ESL Activities, Games and Worksheets

Action Verbs

ESL Action Verbs Worksheet - Reading, Matching and Writing Exercises - Beginner (A1) - 25 minutes

In this action verbs worksheet, students learn and practice common physical action verbs. Students begin by matching action verbs to pictures. Students then do a gap-fill exercise where they complete sentences using the action verbs from the first exercise. Next, students read about someone's daily routine and circle all the action verbs in the text. Students then move on to practice the action verbs they have learnt by writing about their daily routine using the verbs from the worksheet. When the students have finished, they read their daily routines to the class.
Action Verbs Worksheet Preview

Interactive Version - In this action verbs interactive worksheet, students work through a range of exercises to learn commonly used action verbs.

 

Common Verbs Crossword

ESL Common Verbs Activity - Reading, Listening and Speaking - Beginner (A1) - 20 minutes

In this free verbs crossword activity, students complete a crossword with common verbs by guessing missing words in sentences. In pairs, students take it in turns to ask their partner for a clue to one of their missing verbs. Their partner then reads the sentence for that verb using the word 'blank' where the verb should go. The student then tries to guess the verb. If the student guesses the verb successfully, they write it in the crossword. If not, their partner continues to give more clues until the student is able to guess the word. When the students have finished, they check their answers and spelling by comparing worksheets.
Common Verbs Crossword Preview

Interactive Version - In this common verbs breakout room activity, pairs of students guess missing verbs in sentences in order to complete an interactive crossword.

 

Mime a Line

ESL Verbs Miming Game - Miming and Speaking Activity - Beginner (A1) - 25 minutes

In this fun verb miming game, students practice using verbs or verb phrases with various sentence patterns. In teams of two, students take it in turns to secretly choose a square and mime the verb or verb phrase to their teammate. Their teammate watches the mime and tries to make a sentence using the correct verb and sentence pattern shown above the game board. If the sentence is correct, the team claims the square, marking it with a circle or cross. The game continues until one team gets three squares in a row horizontally, vertically, or diagonally. The students play all four games, alternating which team starts each game. The team who won the most games is the winner. A blank version of the game boards has been included, which you can use to have the students practice other verbs and sentence patterns.
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Collocations Challenge

ESL Common Verbs Games - Matching and Speaking Activities - Elementary (A1-A2) - 25 minutes

In these two verb collocation games, students practice verb collocations and making sentences with 20 common verbs. The game can be used with the '20 Common Verbs' worksheet, which provides practice with the same verbs. Students begin with a pelmanism game to practice common verb collocations. In groups, students take it in turns to turn over one verb card and one collocation card. If the verb matches with the phrase on the other card to make a collocation, the student keeps the two cards, scores a point and has another turn. If the cards don't match, the student turns them back over. Play then passes to the next student. At the end, students add up their scores and move on to the second game. In the next game, students take it in turns to pick up a verb card from the pile and make a sentence with the verb. Students are not allowed to repeat a collocation from the first game and must try to create new sentences using the verbs. If the sentence uses the verb correctly and is grammatically correct, the student keeps the card and scores a point. The game continues until all the cards have been used. The students then add up their points from both games to find the overall winner.
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Do, Mime or Tell

ESL Action Verbs Board Game - Reading, Miming and Speaking Activity - Elementary (A1-A2) - 30 minutes

In this entertaining action verbs board game, students perform, mime, or tell someone to do various actions described on cards. Players take it in turns to roll the dice and move their counter along the board. When a player lands on a 'Do an action' square, they pick up a card and perform the action described on the card. If the action is correct, they remain on the square. If not, they go back one square. If a player lands on a 'Tell someone to do an action' square, they pick up a card and tell another player to do the action on the card. If the selected player does the correct action, they stay on the square they are currently on. If not, the selected player must move their counter back one square. When a player lands on a 'Mime an action' square, that player picks up a card and mimes the action on the card for the other players to guess. For example, if the player picks up the card 'clap your hands', they must mime the action and another student in the group must say 'clap'. If another student correctly guesses the verb, the player stays on the square. If the action verb isn't guessed correctly, the player moves back a square. The first player to reach the finish wins the game.
Do, Mime or Tell Preview
 

Fairy Tale Verbs

ESL Verbs Worksheet - Reading, Matching and Writing Exercises - Elementary (A1-A2) - 30 minutes

This story-based verbs worksheet helps students practice common verbs in the past and present simple. Students start by circling the correct verbs and changing the verbs that aren't correct in a set of sentences. Students then match present and past forms of verbs that they are going to use to complete a story about Goldilocks and the three bears. Next, students circle the correct verbs in bold to complete the first part of the Goldilocks story. After that, students continue with a gap-fill exercise where they complete the second part of the story with verbs from a box in their present or past simple form.
Fairy Tale Verbs Preview

Interactive Version - This verbs interactive worksheet contains a variety of exercises to help students practice the past and present simple form of various common verbs.

 

Stative Verbs Practice

ESL Stative Verbs Worksheet - Reading and Writing Exercises - Elementary (A1-A2) - 25 minutes

In this stative verbs worksheet, students learn 20 common stative verbs and practice using them. Give each student a copy of the two-page worksheet. Students begin by finding and writing down 20 stative verbs in a word search. Next, students read a text and underline all the stative verbs. Students then complete sentences with the correct stative verb in brackets in its correct form. In the last exercise, students correct mistakes in sentences that contain stative verbs and rewrite them. If a sentence is correct, students put a tick beside it.
Stative Verbs Practice Preview
 

20 Common Verbs

ESL Verbs Worksheet - Reading, Matching and Writing Exercises - Elementary (A1-A2) - 20 minutes

This verbs worksheet helps students learn and practice 20 common verbs in English. The worksheet can be used along with 'Collocations Challenge', which provides practice with the same verbs. First, students match 12 verbs with words or phrases that can go with the verbs. Next, students underline verbs in questions and answers and then match the questions and answers together. Students then do a gap-fill exercise where they complete sentences with verbs from boxes, adding 's' or 'es' to the verbs when necessary.
20 Common Verbs Preview

Interactive Version - In this interactive verb exercises PDF, students learn 20 common English verbs.

 

Verb Opposites

ESL Verb Opposites Activity - Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking - Elementary (A1-A2) - 45 minutes

This free verb opposites activity helps to increase students' knowledge of verbs and their opposites. Start by reading out the verbs on the worksheet and eliciting each verb's meaning from the class. Next, read out a verb at random from the worksheet. The first team to call out the correct opposite verb scores a point. The winning team can then score an extra point by making an appropriate sentence with the opposite verb. All the students in the class then write down the opposite verb on their worksheet. This continues until the worksheet is complete. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins. Working alone, the students then write ten sentences using a different verb from the worksheet in each sentence, e.g. 'I come to school by car'. In pairs, students then exchange sentences with their partner. Next, the students take it in turns to read one of their partner's sentences and then make another sentence using the opposite verb, e.g. 'I go home at 3 o'clock'. Afterwards, the pairs create a short story using ten verbs from the worksheet.
Verb Opposites Preview
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Interactive Version - Here is a free verb opposites interactive worksheet to help students learn the opposites of commonly-used verbs.

 

Verb Squares

ESL Verbs Game - Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking Activity - Elementary (A1-A2) - 20 minutes

In this verbs guessing game, students guess missing verbs in sentences. In pairs, students take it in turns to read the sentences on their worksheet to their partner using the word 'blank' for the missing verb. Their partner listens and writes their guess in the space on their worksheet. The student then says their answer to their partner. If the verb is correct, they score a point. The student with the most points at the end of the game wins.
Verb Squares Preview
 

Whose sentence is this?

ESL Verbs Game - Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking Activity - Elementary (A1-A2) - 20 minutes

In this common verbs activity, students play a game where they guess who wrote certain sentences. Without showing anyone, students complete sentences on cards with true information, e.g. 'I go to the park every week'. In groups, students then shuffle all their cards together and place them in a pile. One student goes first and takes the top card from the pile. The student then reads the sentence to the group and tries to guess who wrote it. If the student guesses correctly, they win and keep the card. If not, the card is placed at the bottom of the pile. Play then passes to the next student and so on. The student with the most cards at the end of the game wins.
Whose sentence is this? Preview
 

Action Verb, Stative Verb or Both?

ESL Action and Stative Verbs Worksheet - Reading and Writing Exercises - Pre-intermediate (A2) - 30 minutes

In this action vs. stative verbs worksheet, students learn and practice the difference between action verbs and stative verbs. To start, students read a text describing the difference between action verbs and stative verbs. Students then categorize a list of verbs and mark them as either action verbs, stative verbs, or both. Next, students underline the correct action or stative verb forms in a set of sentences. Students then move on to cross out mistakes in sentences and write the corrections on lines. After that, students complete an email with the correct form of the action or stative verbs in brackets. In the last exercise, students write a reply to the email using at least five action verbs and five stative verbs in their response. When the students have finished, review their emails as a class.
Action Verb, Stative Verb or Both? Preview

Interactive Version - This action and stative verbs interactive worksheet can be used to help teach students the difference between action and stative verbs.

 

Confusing Verbs

ESL Confusing Verbs Worksheet - Reading and Writing Exercises - Pre-intermediate (A2) - 25 minutes

This confusing verbs worksheet helps students understand the differences between some commonly confused verb pairs. To begin, students reading about the differences between come/go and bring/take. Students then complete sentences with the correct verb in brackets in its appropriate form. Next, students complete sentences with come, go, bring or take. The students then move on to read about the verbs say/tell and look/watch/see. After that, students do a gap-fill exercise where they complete sentences with the correct verb in brackets. Finally, students use verb pairs to create example sentences of their own to demonstrate the meaning of each verb.
Confusing Verbs Preview

Interactive Version - In this confusing verbs interactive worksheet, students complete a variety of exercises to help them practice verb pairs that are often confused.

 

Group the Verbs

ESL Verbs Game - Reading, Matching, Writing and Speaking Activity - Pre-intermediate (A2) - 35 minutes

In this fun verbs game, students race to place verbs in their correct category. Give each pair of students a verbs list and each set of competing pairs a copy of the categories worksheet. There are eight categories in total with six verbs from the verbs list belonging to each category. The pairs take it in turns to choose a verb from their list and write it in the A or B column under the category that they think the verb belongs to. The pair then crosses the verb off the list. After a pair has written a verb under a category, they are not allowed to move it. When the pairs have categorized all the verbs on their list, elicit the correct answers from the class. Pairs score one point for each correctly placed verb. The pair with the highest score wins the game.
Group the Verbs Preview
 
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