Gerund Recognition Practice

Definition: A verbal is a verb form used as another part of speech.

There are 3 types of verbals: Gerunds, Participles, and Infinitives.  We are going to take each of these separately in these worksheets.  We are also going to have sheets for both recognizing the verbal by itself and then as a verbal phrase.  This worksheet is just on recognizing gerunds.

Gerund: a verb form ending in -ing (present participle) used as a noun.  Thus it can be in the position of subject, direct object, object of the preposition, or predicate noun.

Subject - Reading is my favorite activity.
Direct Object - I enjoy reading.
Object of the Preposition - Rainy days are good days for reading.
Predicate Noun - My favorite subject is reading.

Remember this: A word ending in -ing can be either a verb, a participle or a gerund.  To determine which one it is, you must determine how it is used in the sentence.  Do these steps:

  •  Find the simple subject and simple predicate.
  •  If the -ing form of the verb is not part of the simple predicate (verb), then determine how it is used in the sentence.  Is it in a noun position?  Then it is a gerund.  If it is used as an adjective, then it will be a participle.

Bill and Tony are running.
          Are running is the verb in this sentence.

Bill and Tony enjoy running.
          Running is a gerund, a direct object of the action verb, enjoy.

The running water overflowed.
          Running is a participle (adjective) modifying the noun, water.

Now it is your turn to find the gerunds.  Look for the verb form ending in -ing.  Then decide how that form is used.  If it is used as a noun, then it is a gerund.

Exercise Directions: Write down the gerund in each sentence.  After it, tell how it is being used in the sentence: subject, direct object, predicate noun, or object of the preposition.  Some sentences do NOT have a gerund.  Remember that any part of speech can be compound, meaning that there can be two or more.

1. Helen enjoys sketching children.

2. Swimming is good exercise.

3. Elaine and Rita are singing in the chorus tonight.

4. Of all my interests, I care most about swimming.

5. Traveling gives one a chance to see many wonderful sights.

6. A good hobby for boys can be fishing or painting.

7. Few things are better for relaxing than a satisfying hobby.
(CAREFUL - there is only one gerund in this sentence!)

8. Many people find that they can beat stress by walking.

9. A good hobby and exercise can be skating.

10. Visiting our relatives in a pleasant activity.


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