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English home language

Grade 4

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Module 32

The past tense


Activity 1

To learn to use the past tense correctly [lo 6.2.6]


Verbs change their form to show time (tense) when an action is done.

There are three Tenses:

1. PRESENT TENSE (The action is being done now.)

I write

I am writing

2. PAST TENSE (The action has been done.)

I wrote

I was writing

3. FUTURE TENSE (The action will take place in the future)

I shall write

He will write

Write out the sentences below in the past tense:

  1. Billy Wonks jumps up and down.
  1. Charles finds the fifth golden ticket.
  1. The Oupa-Looms sing a merry song.
  1. The rhododendron’s blossoms are pink, nave and red.
  1. Miss Gobblegum chews bubble-gum all the time.
  1. Violet screams with fright.
  1. The delicious chocolates satisfy the children.
  1. Grandpa smokes a pipe.
  1. They never fight or kick or punch.
  1. They leave you free to cook the lunch.

Activity 2

To learn about punctuation [lo 4.4.3]

Now . . . write out these sentences putting in all the capital letters and full stops.

  1. 1. the grand duke of york, charles, marched his men up the mountain
  • table mountain was so high, the men battled to climb it!
  • the bells of st clement’s said oranges and lemons
  • humpty dumpty fell off grant’s wall into the rosebush
  • jill tumbled after jack in an effort to save him

Oops! Needs more A few errors Well Excellent:Concentrate more! practice understood no errors

Rewrite these sentences filling in commas, full stops and question marks:

  1. 1. When I sell the chicks I’ll buy a new dress
  • The jug was too heavy so she asked her friend to lift it up
  • May I have a drink of water please
  • The large black raven was extremely thirsty
  • The raven filled the jug with stones pebbles and water
  • After Jack Horner had eaten his Christmas pie he had forty winks


LEARNING OUTCOME 4: WRITING The learner is able to write different kinds of factual and imaginative texts for a wide range of purposes.

Assessment Standard

We know this when the learner:

4.4 applies knowledge of language at various levels:

4.4.3 paragraph level:

uses topic and supporting sentences to develop a coherent paragraph,

uses appropriate grammar, spelling and punctuation.

LEARNING OUTCOME 6: LANGUAGE STRUCTURE AND USE The learner will know and be able to use the sounds, words and grammar of the language and interpret texts.

Assessment Standard

We know this when the learner:

6.2 works with sentences:

  • uses complex tenses correctly (e.g. past progressive – ‘She was watching TV when …’).


Activity 1 - past tense

1. Billy Wonks jumped up and down.

2. Charles found the fifth golden ticket.

3. The Oupa-Looms sang a merry song.

4. The rhododendron’s blossoms were pink, mauve and red.

5. Miss Gobblegum chewed bubble-gum all the time.

6. Violet screamed with fright.

7. The delicious chocolates satisfied the children.

8. Grandpa smoked a pipe.

9. They never fought or kicked or punched .

10. They left you free to cook lunch.

Activity 2 (a) Punctuation

1. T he G rand D uke of Y ork, C harles, marched his men up the mountain.

2. T able M ountain was so high, the man battled to climb it!

3. T he bells of S t Clenents said, “ O ranges and lemons”.

4. H umpty D umpty fell off G rant’s wall into the rosebush.

5. J ill tumbled after J ack in an effort to save him.

Activity 2 (b) Commas

1. chicks, l’ll

2. heavy, so

3. water, please?

4. Large, black, thirsty.

5. stones, pebbles

6. pie, he

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Source:  OpenStax, English home language grade 4. OpenStax CNX. Sep 18, 2009 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11092/1.1
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