Teaching plural and singular nouns to kindergarten students might seem simple at first. That is until you remember that there are no “foots” and teeth are not “tooths.” This concept is familiar to all adult English speakers, but this is a brand new discovery for our little ones. So how do we explain this to them?
It would be best to introduce the simplest examples of singular words versus plural words to kindergarten, ones that require just a letter /s/. Once the class understands these, you may present abnormal and more complex examples and eventually move to solidify the concept through interactive and engaging activities.
Let’s look at a four-step plan for teaching singular and plural to kindergarten students.
1. Introduce The Concept Of Singular VS Plural
Inquire about the differences between the terms. They’ll pick out the S, and you may explain how, in many words, adding an ‘s’ to the end makes it signify more than one. Inform them that this is referred to as plural. When there are multiples of something, it is referred to as plural.
The majority of your pupils will be familiar with the fundamentals of adding -s to nouns to pluralize them. Before going on to nouns with different ends, this is an excellent time to review the idea.
You could introduce the concept by saying something ridiculous and allowing them to correct you, for example, telling the class that you have “three dog” instead of three dogs and allowing them to respond with the correct plural form of the word.
You can start giving them exercises to practice taking the singular form of a word and making it plural by adding an ‘s .’These exercises will build the knowledge foundation they need when introducing more complex plurals.
2. Introduce Complex Plural Rules
Now that the class understands the difference between singular and plural explain that you may add -es to a word to signify more than one thing.
Starting with foxes and boxes is a good idea because those are possible things they can spell, and they can see the “es” at the end. Break “es” into a short e sound + s so they can easily hear the suffix “es.” Make your examples ridiculous; youngsters will be more open to learning if they have fun with the lesson.
Now have them sort plural flashcards according to whether they contain an “s” or an “es” at the end. You may turn this into a competition or a group activity.
You may introduce exceptions to rules and weird words once every student has adequately mastered and understood the more complex rules. You may repeat this process for all standard plural rules. Do not yet bring in complex examples of exceptions to the rules you teach them. Focus on one concept at a time.
3. Explain Abnormal Plural Nouns To The Class
They only have to remember irregular plural words. You can bring them up organically as you come across them in talks.
I would recommend putting back the “Single” and “Plural” headings and instructing them to place the singular and plural versions of the noun side by side, as they did when you first added -s, -es, and -ies. This will allow the class to familiarize themselves with the spelling and pronunciation of words.
Another simple method to make the notion of multiple nouns humorous and enjoyable is to use this technique. Give the students erroneous plural examples and let them correct you.
4. Practice The Taught Concepts With The Students
Now that all of your students understand the basic and complex concepts of plurals, start organizing fun activities to help them develop and solidify the idea in their minds. Below is a list of fun activities you could set up to practice plurals with kindergarteners.
Use The Look, Cover, Write, and Check Method
Try to come up with as many nouns as you can with your class. Draw two columns on small whiteboards. Make a list of single words in the first column. Be sure to include both nouns with standard plurals and those with more complicated suffix ends in your list.
Get your pupils to write the plural nouns in the opposite column. Reverse the task, where you write the plural nouns, and your students must figure out the singular form.
To assist your class of little ones in learning plurals, use the Look, Cover, Write, Check method. This implies that your pupils will examine a word, cover it, write it from memory, and review it.
Play A Cut And Paste Game
Make a list of as many different words as you can on cards. Assign your students the task of writing, cutting, and sticking the right plural ends to the end of the words. You might also do this game in reverse, where you give your child the plurals ending, and they must place the correct nouns next to it.
Encourage Continous Practice With A “Working Wall”
At home, you may create a ‘working’ wall. Prepare a huge piece of paper with many parts, one for each suffix combination that comes to mind. If your kid comes across a noun that fits into one of these categories, have them write it down.
Play A Picture Game
Using an image with many intriguing items is a pleasant and straightforward method to teach single and plural nouns. Then, ask the pupils to describe what they observe. They may refer to a dog. Inquire about the number of dogs if there is more than one.
After that, inquire about the proper plural form of the term “dog.” They can keep going until they comprehend the idea by listing the single and plural versions of all the things in the picture.
We also have hundreds of teaching resources on the site to help teaching English to all grades of student. Our Kindergarten grade one resources include reading comprehension materials to help students develop language skills and you can access the full list here, we have 3 examples below we think are useful to teach plurals and nouns.
The easiest way to teach kids any concept is through active learning and practice. Kids require a lot of consolidation of new ideas to grasp them properly. You can teach kindergarten students the difference between singular and plural words by starting with the bare basics and building on the foundation from there.