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Pronoun in Subject Position (I)
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A pronoun is a word that substitutes for a noun or noun phrase. It can function independently ( e.g., ‘me’ or in place of a NP referring to someone or something present (e.g., I, you ) or to someone or something elsewhere (e.g., she, it, this). Personal pronouns (I, we, you, he, she, it, they) are generally developed in the earliest stages of language.


Teacher actions are highlighted

  • Prepare written directions, for example: Put a book on the table; Sit down on a chair; Erase the board; Drink some water.

  • Give a sentence strip to a student (Emma). Emma reads and does what the sentence says.

    • Students sign/ say and write what Emma did, e.g. Emma put a book on the table.

    • Ask Emma to read the sentence.

    • Show  that Emma needs to change the first word. She is talking about herself.  She doesn’t say her name. She says 'I'.

    • Put a line through the word Emma

      • Write 'I' above 'Emma". Have Emma read the sentence again using I.

  • Tell the students: Watch what I do, e.g. throw a paper in the basket.

    • Ask the students for a sentence telling what you did.

      • Ms. Julie threw a paper in the basket.

      • Write the sentence on the board.

    • Ask: How should I write the sentence? 

    • Ask: Why did I say/sign 'I' instead of  'Ms. Julie'.

    • Student discuss when and why the pronoun 'I'  is used instead of a name.

Anchor 1
Advancing the Strategy
  • Give each student 3 sentences; each sentence tells about a characteristic of the student, e.g., Samuel has black hair. Samuel is tall. Samuel has brown eyes.

    • Students rewrite sentences that tell about themselves, changing the name to the pronoun I.

    • Each student reads her/his original sentences, then reads the rewritten sentences, and tells why the pronoun I was used.

  • Have the students read a story that frequently includes the pronoun I. Each time they read the pronoun I, have them identify who is talking.

  • Remind the students to use the pronoun I correctly when writing.

  • Incorporate the pronoun I into all other activities during the school day and emphasize its use.

Anchor 2
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