Article Teaching the five W's - Who, What, Where, Why, When


What are interrogative words? An interrogative word is used to ask questions. Wh-questions are used to ask for information about an event or a situation. A wh-question consists of an interrogative word i.e. who, what, where, when, why followed by a verb and a noun complement. Word order is subject-verb-object.

For example, "What's the date?", "Where are you?", "Who is he?", "When is it?", "What's the time?"

Here's a simple activity that I've used in class to teach the five w's to my students.

Mickey Mouse is having a birthday party!
You're invited.

Date: Sunday, June 1st, 2006

Place: Mickey Mouse House, Tokyo Disneyland
Chiba Prefecture, Urayasu City

Time: at 2 o'clock in the afternoon.

See you at my party!

Question: What's this?
Answer: This is an invitation

Question: Who is Mickey Mouse?
Answer: Mickey Mouse is my friend./He's a cartoon./He's a mouse.

Question: Where is the party?
Answer: At Mickey Mouse House, Tokyo Disneyland, Chiba Prefecture, Urayasu City

Question: When is the party?
Answer: On Sunday, June 1st, 2006

Question: Why is Mickey Mouse having a party?
Answer: It's his birthday.

I review the grammar points in class and then distribute the invitation handout to the students. Write the questions on the board and/or prepare a handout with the questions to give out. Have the students work in pairs or in small groups to come up with the answers. Take up the questions in class. Students correct their answers. If time permits, have the students practice in pairs asking and answering the questions.

I hope this lesson plan sparks ideas for preparing your own lesson on teaching students interrogative pronouns.

Copyright (c) 2006 Stefan Chiarantano- all rights reserved

Categories: Lesson Plans & Handouts

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Thank you.

I donot think so it is easy way to teach ur students specially if its the second language,my sugestion is need to explain more.sorry for bothering u.

A great idea with an invitation card, but may be a bit too complicated with this "is having" because there are two verbs here actually. May be something with Present Simple would be better or you should give more explanations about these link-verbs and -ing forms? But thanks a lot for the idea.

Thanks a lot for this lesson,but I m sorry that doesnt works in every class.Because it has a lot of info gabs such as"how will they know the real meaning and usage of WHY " and "what is the distinction between WHAT for VERB and WHAT for object"

This manner depends on you teaching grammer with students language or not.

my teacher was doing those suggestions you have shown. thnk you for the info.

i have a better way to make someone learn five W's :)


now answers....

Who Me and U
What Together
When Anytime
Where Anywhere
Why You know why!

:) hope u enjoyed it...........

take care

I need 20 book like this one you got.


I tried this in Saudi Arabia. They don't celebrate birthdays here so it went over like a lead balloon. It's a good idea though.

thank you for your sugestions i like it

My stdnts know what "what", "where", "who", "when", "why" n "how" mean, but they they dont seem to be able to put the verb after the 5 w's.

For example, they would say "what your name?" instead of "what is your name?". How do i get them to put the verb? I cant teach them what verb is because they're in first grade. They wont know what verb is.

Plus, if they do put a verb after the 5 ws, it's usually the wrong one, like "what do your name?" instead of "what is your name?".

Can somebody help me?

The best place here to ask would be the forum, where there are many teachers who can help:

Thank you. It went on well.
I did it in another way. I asked them to make questions to get these information as answers. Although they committed some mistakes, I was happy.

Edna Jones
i need help with tne information of the -five W's i had three head injuries and i don't remember some things, such as the meaning of the Nouns, Pronouns, Verbs, in A Ssentance where to put these -,-.-;-?-/-'-"`-~-:-!{-}-)-(-)=-+--these are thing s that i am having a problem with please send some information to my Email thank you

Edna, we have a forum where you can ask questions and people will answer:

which is better? What is the best time to callback or when is the best time to callback?

They're both OK, though I would say 'call back' as two words..

im useing the four w's for a project

Thanks a million, it is helping me in preparing my class.

(How many?) Thousands of (what?) Monarch Butterflies (what) fly (where)from
Canada to Mexico (When) Every year, (Why) because they mate and deposit their eggs on the leaves of the trees in a remote place in Michoacan. After that, they die.

I like that, except it's not exactly accurate. How about this single sentence that incorporates how as well:
(When) Every year, (how many) millions of (who) Monarch butterflies (what) fly (how) in masses (where) from Canada to Mexico (why) to escape the harsh northern winters.

'Who', 'Whom', 'Whose', 'Which' and 'What' are interrogative pronouns. 'When' and 'Why' are not.

I have changed the wording.

I do the same thing. I also stress the verb needed. The kids catch on fast. I also throw in How. How did you scratch your arm? Why did you do that.
Glad to see someone else does the same thing.

Please i want to know more about verds, who,where, how ,did,has. had, and how to use them properly.

We have a forum where you can ask any questions you like about these things:

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