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Powerful Verbs KS2 Features of Writing Worksheets KS2

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Support pupils in KS2 to explore more ambitious vocabulary for their own writing using the activities provided in this resource pack. Each task – understand, explain, challenge, test, apply – explores how choosing more powerful synonyms for everyday verbs can change the meaning of a sentence, and give writing more impact.

Perfect for home learning, as an exercise before an independent writing task, or as a way to challenge more able learners in lower year groups, the worksheets are bright and engaging, using eye-catching images to fire children’s imaginations, and giving them the opportunity to apply their knowledge in creative writing activities.

This primary resource is divided into five sections:

  • Understand
    Match common verbs with a more-powerful alternative, write powerful verb alternatives for words, and change the verbs in the example sentences for more-powerful ones
  • Explain
    Read the pairs of sentences and describe the effect that the more-powerful verb has in each. Then change the verbs in the given sentences and explain what effect that has
  • Challenge
    Write two sentences about each of the images shown. The first should have a common verb, then the second should have a powerful verb
  • Test
    Add powerful verbs to fill in the blanks in sentences, and underline the powerful verbs in a passage. Next, create a sentence for each of the powerful verbs given
  • Apply
    Write a short story about the image provided, using plenty of powerful verbs

What is a powerful verb?

If verbs describe an action, a powerful verb is a more interesting version of basic verbs that help to make writing more descriptive, exciting and engaging. Learning these will help expand children’s vocabularies and improve their speaking and writing skills.

Powerful verb examples

  • Sprinted, galloped or strode instead of ran
  • Shouted, whispered or muttered instead of said
  • Searched, eyeballed or perused instead of looked
  • Snoozed, slumbered or dozed instead of slept

Powerful verb list

  • Astound
  • Chuckled
  • Created
  • Destroyed
  • Devoured
  • Discover
  • Emerged
  • Flopped
  • Flung
  • Grasp
  • Leap
  • Observe
  • Plead
  • Raged
  • Scream
  • Scribe
  • Shudder
  • Sprout
  • Spy
  • Stroll
  • Stumble
  • Whacked
  • Whisper
  • Withered

National Curriculum English programme of study links

Year 3/4 Writing - composition

Pupils should be taught to evaluate and edit by assessing the effectiveness of their own and others’ writing and suggesting improvements

Year 5/6 Writing - composition

Pupils should be taught to evaluate and edit by proposing changes to vocabulary, grammar and punctuation to enhance effects and clarify meaning

  • worksheets

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