First Grade

Understanding Nouns at the Primary Level

Empowered Learner, Creative Communicator
eiffel tower


Students will be able to learn about nouns by watching a Schoolhouse Rock video, A Noun is a Person, Place or Thing, with its catchy tune, then see instructional videos on the definition of nouns and how they are used in sentences. Finally, students will be able to check their knowledge of nouns through games and online quizzes and apply their knowledge in their own writing.

Students will:

  • Understand the definition of nouns.
  • Understand the use of nouns in a sentence.
  • Apply their knowledge in their own writing.

Vocabulary Words:

  1. Noun: A noun is any member of a class of words that can function as the main or only elements of subjects of verbs (A dog just barked), or of objects of verbs or prepositions (to send money from home), and that in English can take plural forms and possessive endings (Three of his buddies want to borrow John's laptop). Nouns are often described as referring to persons, places, things, states, or qualities.

To prepare for this lesson:

See Accommodations Page and Charts on the site in the Teacher Resources. 

Directions for this activity:

  1. Have students watch three videos that explain nouns in an interesting way. Watch the Schoolhouse Rock video, A Noun is a Person, Place or Thing, a Spongebob video, and Turtle Diary instructional video about nouns.

  2. Then have them apply their knowledge by playing games, doing assessments, writing, and creating a Word Cloud presentation.

  3. Activity: Allow them to practice their learning by playing several games.

Different options for assessing the students:

  • Observations
  • Check for understanding
  • Do evaluations: First Grade, Second Grade and choose the most appropriate noun topic
  • Students create their own Word Cloud of nouns with a group or individually. May print and make a poster or share online.
  • Students can go on a noun walk and write down as many nouns as they can in a specific amount of time.

MITECS: Michigan adopted the "ISTE Standards for Students" called MITECS (Michigan Integrated Technology Competencies for Students) in 2018.

Empowered Learner
1c. Students use technology to seek feedback that informs and improves their practice and to demonstrate their learning in a variety of ways.

Creative Communicator
6d.Students publish or present content that customizes the message and medium for their intended audiences.

Device: PC, Chromebook, Mac, iPad 

Browser: Chrome, Safari, Firefox, Edge, ALL

App, Extension, or Add-on:


A Noun is a Person, Place or Thing

Parts of Speech video

Spongebob video

Turtle Diary


  • Students watch videos that combine words and songs/speech.
  • Students read directions for games and follow along to successfully pass levels and compete. 
  • Given writing prompts, students write a short story about a topic of their choice and exchange for peer review. Underline all nouns.
  • Create a word cloud of nouns.
  • Make a word cloud poster of all the nouns you can find in a room.
  • Create a “Can You Spot the Difference?” photo by using an online (CC) photo and touching it up to make a change.

Students use games to foster math skills.

  • Read a paragraph from a science textbook or article online.  Underline/highlight the nouns. Are there any similarities?
  • What nouns describe matter?
  • In your current unit of study, have students identify nouns in the text.
  • Create a word bank of geographical nouns: mountain, river, etc. and play a game with them.
  • Discuss the difference between nouns and proper nouns - mountain and Mt. Rainier, for example.

This task card was created by Caryn Parker, Gull Lake Virtual Partnership, January 2021.