Adverbs for Kids

by Craig Shrives

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What Are Adverbs? (for Kids)

Adverbs give us more information about verbs. In other words, they add to verbs.

Adverbs add to a verb by giving us information like how, when, where, or why the action is happening.
adverbs for kids (tell us how, when, where, or why)
Let's look at these examples in more detail:
  • Tony complained bitterly.
  • (The adverb "bitterly" gives us information about the verb "complained" to tell us how. Note that the adverb ends "-ly." Lots of adverbs that tell us how end "-ly.")
  • Jack bought a cactus yesterday.
  • (The adverb "yesterday" gives us information about the verb "bought" to tell us when.)
  • Barry will wait here.
  • (The adverb "here" gives us information about the verb "will wait" to tell us where.)
  • Anne is training to win.
  • (The adverb "to win" gives us information about the verb "is training" to tell us why. Note that an adverb can be more than one word.)

Examples of Adverbs

Here are some more examples of adverbs for how, when, where, and why. (Notice that an adverb can be more than one word.)
howwhenwherewhy
  • quickly
  • loudly
  • angrily
  • with passion
  • without trying
  • now
  • today
  • yesterday
  • after breakfast
  • in the morning
  • here
  • there
  • in the corner
  • near the tree
  • where I live
  • to help others
  • in order to win a prize
  • because I said so
  • for a good reason
  • because I want one
Most single-word adverbs that tell us how end "-ly," but here are three common "how" adverbs that do not end "-ly":
  • fast, well, hard

More about Adverbs

As you learn to spot adverbs, you will soon notice that adverbs can also give us information about adjectives and other adverbs, not just verbs. For example:

Adverbs with adjectives:

  • John is an extremely good dancer.
  • It is bitterly cold outside.

Adverbs with adverbs:

  • Tina answered unbelievably quickly.
  • The lioness is feeding her cubs exceptionally carefully.

Fronted Adverbials

Another interesting point about adverbs is that they can be placed at the start of a sentence. When used like this, they are called fronted adverbials. Let's compare some examples without and with fronted adverbials:
  • The canary sang joyfully.
  • ("Joyfully" is an adverb telling us how.)
  • Joyfully, the canary sang.
  • (This time, "joyfully" is at the front of the sentence. It is a fronted adverbial. Notice the comma after the fronted adverbial.)
Most fronted adverbials are multi-word adverbs:
  • I went to the park yesterday morning.
  • ("Yesterday morning" is an adverb telling us when.)
  • Yesterday morning, I went to the park.
  • (This time, "yesterday morning" is at the front of the sentence. It is a fronted adverbial. Notice the comma.)
Here is another example:
  • Crowds gathered on the tops of the nearby hills to watch the eclipse.
  • ("On the top of the mountain" is an adverb telling us where.)
  • On the tops of the nearby hills, crowds gathered to watch the eclipse.
  • (This time, "on the tops of the nearby hills" is at the front of the sentence. It is a fronted adverbial. Again, notice the comma.)

Even More about Adverbs

The Real Names

  • "how" adverbs = adverbs of manner
  • "when" adverbs = adverbs of time
  • "where" adverbs = adverbs of place
  • "why" adverbs = adverbs of reason

Other Types of Adverbs

Adverbs can give us other information about verbs too, not just how, where, when, and why. For example, adverbs can also give us information like comparison, condition, and concession.
  • Jack runs faster than you.
  • ("Faster than" is an adverb of comparison. This is also called an adverb of degree.)
  • If it rains, the game will end.
  • ("If it rains" is an adverb of condition.)
  • Even though it is cold, the flowers are flourishing.
  • ("Even though it is cold" is an adverb of concession.)
Here is a video lesson giving more information about adverbs:

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See Also

Adjectives for kids Conjunctions for kids Nouns for kids Prepositions for kids Pronouns for kids Verbs for kids adverbs for adult learners a list of 300 adverbs

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