adjectives adverbs n.
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Adjectives & Adverbs. the zest of writing. Adjectives. Recognize an adjective when you see one An adjective describes nouns by answering one of the questions: What kind is it? How many are there? Which one is it? An adjective can be a single word, a phrase, or a clause. Adjectives.

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adjectives adverbs

Adjectives & Adverbs

the zest of writing

  • Recognize an adjective when you see one
    • An adjective describes nouns by answering one of the questions: What kind is it? How many are there? Which one is it?
    • An adjective can be a single word, a phrase, or a clause.
  • What kind is it?
    • Dan decided that the fuzzy green bread would make an unappetizing sandwich.
      • What kind of bread? Fuzzy and green! What kind of sandwich? Unappetizing!
    • A friend with a fat wallet is a fun friend indeed.
      • What kind of friend? A rich one!
    • A warm towel is more comforting than a hot fudge sundae.
      • What kind of towel? One right out of the dryer!
  • How many are there?
    • Seven hungry space aliens slithered into the diner and ordered two dozen vanilla milkshakes.
      • How many aliens? Seven! How many milkshakes? 24!
    • The students, five freshmen and six sophomores, braved Dr. Ribley’scalculas exam.
      • How many students? 11!
    • The disorganized pile of book, which had 17 overdue volumes, blocked the doorway.
      • How many were overdue? 17!
  • Which one is it?
    • The most unhealthy item from the cafeteria is the steak sub.
      • Which item from the cafeteria? The steak one!
    • The angry caterpillar eyeing your cookie has started to crawl this way.
      • Which caterpillar? The angry one!
    • The students who studied rigorously for the test passed with flying colors.
      • What kind of colors? Flying rainbows!
  • To describe a noun fully, you might need to use two or more adjectives. A series of adjectives may require commas but not always.
  • If the adjectives are coordinate, meaning the adjectives need no particular order, then they need commas.
    • For example: The tall, creamy, delicious milkshake melted on the counter.
  • Noncoordinate adjectives do not make sense when you reorder the series, so they do not need commas.
    • For example: Jeanne’s twofatSiamese cats hog the couch.
  • Comparative adjectives make a comparison between two items – people, places, things, etc.
  • To form comparative adjectives either add –erto the end of the word OR add more before it.
    • One syllable words usually take –er at the end
    • Two syllable words vary.
    • Any word over three syllables will use more or less, depending on what you’re saying
  • Superlative adjectives make a comparison between three or more items.
  • To form a superlative adjective either add –estto the end of a word or add most before it.
    • One syllable words take –estat the end
    • Two syllable words vary.
    • Three or more syllable words use most or least, depending on what you’re saying.
  • Let’s check out some samples...
    • Stevie, a suck up who sits in the front row, has a thicker notebook than Nina, who never comes to class.
    • The thinnest notebook belongs to Mike, a computer geek who scans all of his notes and saves them on the hard drive.
    • Because Fuzz is a smaller cat than Buster, she loses the fight for tuna.
    • For dinner, we ordered a bigger pizza than usual.
    • Kelly is lazier than an old dog.
    • The new suit makes Adam more handsome than a movie star.
  • More samples
    • Movies on our new flat screen are less cloudy.
    • Heather is more compassionate than anyone I know.
    • These are the tartest lemon-roasted squid tentacles that I have ever eaten!
    • Nigel, the tallest member of the class, has to sit in front.
    • Because Hector refuses to read directions, he made the crispest mashed potatoes ever.
    • Some would say Justin Bieber is the most gorgeous singer in the world.
    • The most frustrating part of my day was crashing into Starbucks.
  • Recognize an adverb when you see one.
    • Adverbs tweak the meaning of verbs, adjectives, other adverbs, and clauses.
    • Adverbs can be single words, or they can be phrases and clauses.
    • They can answer one of these four questions: How? When? Where? Why?
  • Some single word examples:
    • Lenora rudely grabbed the last cookie.
      • The adverb rudely fine-tunes the word grabbed
    • Tyler stumbled in the completely dark kitchen.
      • The adverb completely fine-tunes dark (Adj describing kitchen)
    • Roxanne veryhappily accepted the bonus from her boss.
      • The adverb very fine-tunes other adverb happily
  • Many single word adverbs end in –ly.
    • For example, peacefully, rudely, completely, happily
  • Not all –ly words are adverbs, though. For example, lovely is an adjective.
  • Many single word adverbs have no specific ending, such as next, not, often, seldom, and then.
    • If you are uncertain, LOOK IT UP! That’s my best advice.
  • Adverbs can also be multi-word phrases and clauses.
  • For example: At 2am, a bat flew through Debbie’s open window.
    • The prepositional phrase “At 2am” indicates when the event happened. The second prepositional phrase “through Debbie’s open window” describes where this hideous creature traveled.
  • With a fork, George thrashed the raw eggs until they foamed.
    • The subordinate clause “until they foamed” describes how George prepared the eggs.
  • Sylvia emptied the carton of milk into the sink because the expiration date had long passed.
    • The subordinate clause “because the expiration date had long passed” describes why Sylvia poured out the milk.
  • Comparative adverbs discuss two people, places, or things.
  • Use more or less for comparative adverbs.
    • For example, Beth loves green vegetables, so she eats broccoli more often than her brother.
  • Superlative adverbs compare three or more people, places, or things.
  • Use most and least for superlative adverbs.
    • For example, Among the members of her family, Beth eats pepperoni pizza the least often.
  • Don’t use an adverb when a stronger verb will do.
    • For example, don’t say “Drink quickly” when you could say “Gulp”!
  • At the same time, don’t use an adjective when an adverb is necessary!
    • For example, you often hear people say “I am real smart.” or “This pizza is real delicious.”
    • Real is an adjective, so it cannot modify another adjective. What you need hear is the word really. (Notice that –ly ending???)
  • Lastly, remember that adverbs are NOT part of the verb. They are a separate entity, totally on their own, even when they come in the middle of an auxiliary verb.
    • For example, “For his birthday, Frank would also like a jar of dill pickles.
    • In this sentence, also is an adverb that interrupts the verb phrase “would like”.
    • Another example, “Despite the approaching deadline, Sheryl has not started her essay.
    • In this sentence, not is an adverb that interrupts the verb phrase “has started”.