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Language and Communication Use the auxiliary verb is  This resource has been viewed by a moderator.


The child will use the auxiliary verb "is" in subject-verb, subject-verb-object and subject-verb-adjective sentences. For example "the cat is eating", "the boy is crying".

Early years skill:not specified
Early years typical range:40-60+m
P-scales/Curriculum skill:English Speaking
P-scales/Curriculum level:P8
TAP skill:Expressive Language
TAP level:TAP48
Pre/Nat. Curriculum Area:not specified
Pre/Nat. Curiculum Standard:not specified
Section:Primary (5-11yrs) info
Activity/strategy name and materials required How to do the activity Key principles for doing the activity and comments
Describe the picture

Selection of pictures of people carrying out different actions.

Cue card with the word "is" written on it.

Pen and paper (optional)

1. Explain that you are going to practice sentences remembering to use all the little words;

2. Explain that one of the words that the child needs to remember is the word "is";

3. Show the child the cue card and explain that it says "is";

4. Show the child one of the pictures and give a simple description e.g. "the boy is running";

5. Show the child another picture and encourage them to describe it;

6. Use the cue card to prompt them if they forget to use the word "is";

7. You could write the child's descriptions down, and use this to reflect back whether they had remembered the word "is".

Photos are usually easier for children to interpret.

In natural speech, the "is" in these sentences often shortens to a "s" or "z" sound, for example "the cat is playing" becomes "the cat's playing", and "the kettle is boiling" becomes "the kettle's boiling". Either the full form or the shortened form is acceptable for this activity.

Make a book

Small notebook or exercise book, or a book you have made

Pens, pencils etc.

"is" cue card as previous activity

1. Encourage the child to draw a picture of themselves or a classmate carrying out an activity;

2. Ask the child to describe the picture (e.g. "Naeem is jumping");

3. Use the cue card to prompt them if they forget to use the word "is";

4. Write the child's description below the picture;

5. Continue until the book is filled.

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