What on earth is an adverbial? Help for parents

by | Oct 11, 2023 | Education

Benny the bear unpacks tricky grammar terms in this fun short story.

Once upon a time, deep in the heart of a lush forest, there lived a friendly bear named Benny. Benny loved exploring his home and meeting new friends. One sunny morning, as he wandered through the woods, he stumbled upon a group of primary school children who were on a field trip.

The children were excited to see a real-life bear and gathered around Benny with curiosity sparkling in their eyes. Benny, being a kind and patient bear, decided to teach them about some important concepts they were learning in their language class.

“Hello, little ones,” Benny greeted them warmly. “Today, I’ll be your forest guide and teach you about adverbials, prepositions, conjunctions, possessive pronouns, and suffixes.”

The children looked at Benny in astonishment, eager to learn from their newfound forest teacher.

“What are adverbials?”

“Adverbials are words or phrases that describe how, when, or where an action takes place. For example, if I say, ‘I climbed the tree slowly,’ the word ‘slowly’ is an adverbial because it tells you how I climbed the tree” Benny explained.

The children listened intently and then practised creating their own sentences with adverbials. “Benny roared loudly!” one of the children exclaimed.

“Now, what about prepositions?”

Benny smiled and nodded approvingly. “Excellent! Prepositions are words that show the relationship between objects or locations. For example, if I say, ‘I am sitting on a log,’ the word ‘on’ is a preposition because it tells you where I am sitting.”

The children eagerly joined in, forming sentences using prepositions. “The squirrel is hiding in the tree!” another child shouted.

“But, what about conjunctions?”

Benny clapped his paws together. “Well done! Conjunctions are words that join words, phrases, or sentences together. They make our writing flow smoothly. For example, if I say, ‘I love to swim, and I love to fish,’ the word ‘and’ is a conjunction because it joins two activities I enjoy.”

The children practised using conjunctions in their sentences. “I like to play soccer, but I also like to dance!” a little girl exclaimed with a giggle.

“How do I use possessive pronouns though?”

Benny beamed at their enthusiasm. “Wonderful! Now, possessive pronouns show ownership or possession. Instead of saying, ‘This is Benny’s forest,’ I can say, ‘This forest is mine.’ Here, ‘mine’ is a possessive pronoun.”

The children eagerly participated, replacing sentences with possessive pronouns. “That is her bicycle,” one boy said, pointing to his friend.

“What are suffixes?”

Benny nodded and encouraged them. “You’re getting the hang of it! Suffixes are added to the end of words to change their meaning or create new words. For example, if we take the word ‘play’ and add the suffix ‘-ful,’ it becomes ‘playful,’ which means full of playfulness or fun.”

The children giggled as they started inventing their own words by adding suffixes. “I have a sweet tooth, so I love candy-licious!” a boy exclaimed, creating laughter among his friends.

As the sun began to set, Benny was overjoyed to see how much the children had learned. They now understood adverbials, prepositions, conjunctions, possessive pronouns, and suffixes.

“Thank you, Benny, for teaching us in such a fun and memorable way!” they chorused.

Benny smiled, his heart full of joy. “You’re welcome, my little friends. Remember, language is like the forest we explore – full of beauty and endless possibilities. Keep learning and exploring, and you’ll discover the wonders that words can create.”

And so, as the children bid farewell to their newfound forest teacher, they carried the lessons of adverbials, prepositions, conjunctions, possessive pronouns, and suffixes with them, forever grateful for their encounter with the friendly bear named Benny.

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