Is it a ‘doing – something’ word?

The suffix ‘ing’

An article, I recently read in an educational magazine called ‘The Reading Teacher’, identified various children’s books to help teachers teach suffixes by using stories. My focus in a Year 1 class recently, was the suffix ‘ing’ and it was their experience of engaging with this suffix. As recommended in the article, I chose the book ‘Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What do you hear?’ by Bill Martin Jr and Eric Carle.

Polar Bear

We started off with a quick brainstorm about words they’d heard of which had the ‘ing’ sound in it. They came up with a whole lot, including words like ring, king etc. I listed them too, but separately. I told the students they would become word detectives and signal to me when they heard an ‘ing’ word in the story.  I also shared with them that the ‘ing’ word needs to be a word that’s a doing-something word.  In the book, each page has an animal with the sound it makes, a word that’s doing something! So, they picked every word. We listed them into two categories.

Doing something word and not doing something word.

We revisited the not – doing – something ‘ing’ words like king, ring, spring and children could clearly understand why they didn’t belong in doing words.

I had two tasks prepared for the children to choose from, to practice their understanding of ‘ing’ words. The goal for this lesson was for them to identify ‘ing’ words which are doing something versus ing words which are not-doing-something. I was also hoping that children will understand that any action is a doing word and that ‘ing’ is nothing but continuous action!

  1. List the different sounds animals make (based on the story read) but with different animals. Find the Animals and sounds suffix ‘ing’ here.
  2. Cut, sort and paste ‘ing’ doing something words verus ‘ing’ not doing something words. ing paired sort picture cards and ing sorting sheet here.

Both were very achievable and children showed that they clearly understood the difference.

word list
List of sounds
Pictures sort ing words
Picture sort

We ended the lesson with some movement using ‘ing’ words like running, hopping, singing and then looked at the grammatical term, suffix and discussed what it meant. We looked at the root word ‘jump’ and I asked them what I needed to add to it, to make it jumping. They all said ‘ing’. I asked what is ‘ing’? They said ‘a suffix’!

Thank you for read + ing = reading