About two months ago I began teaching English to all ages of students in Korea. Something I've noticed my Korean students are having trouble learning is the past tense of verbs. Regular verbs, like "play," are easy for most of my students because simply adding -ed changes the verbs to past tense. Once my students understood that, regular verbs became easy for them. However, irregular verbs are more difficult.
The past tense of irregular verbs can be tricky because there is no addition of -ed; the irregular verb changes. For example, "run" changes to "ran" and not "runned." Learning irregular verbs seems to be a matter of memorization. Because of this, my students need plenty of practice and repetition. To help them, I created three different worksheets. The first worksheet focuses on regular verbs only, and the second worksheet only gives practice with irregular verbs. The third worksheet is a combination of regular and irregular verbs. All worksheets have two parts and a total of fifteen questions. In the first part the students change verbs from present to past tense. In the second part the students change present tense sentences to past tense sentences.
The first worksheet, Past Tense: Regular Verbs, my students breezed through with little assistance. They needed a lot more help with the second worksheet. I started class by writing some examples of irregular verbs on the board. Sometimes the students knew the past tense form or were able to guess. Other times they needed to be told the past tense form. We did most of the second worksheet together in class.
Before the final worksheet, Past Tense: Regular and Irregular Verbs, I made a chart on the board with student given examples of verbs. I had the students then identify the regular and irregular verbs. We made present tense sentences with each of the verbs and then changed those sentences to past tense. The sentences we made together were simple so we were able to better focus on the verb changes. "They play in the park." turned into "They played in the park." After this practice, the students completed most of the worksheet on their own.
Since my students still need practice memorizing the past tense of many irregular verbs, I'll have them make flashcards to practice with. I also might try a card game like Concentration. Or I might have the students sit in a circle and have one student give a verb and the next student say the verb and give its past tense. Going around the circle, each student would repeat what the previous student said and then add a new verb.
Find the worksheets I created for my classroom by clicking here.