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Another way to learn irregular verbs


One way to learn irregular verbs is to divide them into groups.

According to some grammar books, irrregular English verbs DO seem to have some type of regularity.  Here are some tips along with a couple of activities.


In this group, verbs remain nearly the same and change final -d for -t.

For example: build> built > built.

Created by blogdeserena

Irregular verbs class 1

Write the correct form of the verb in brackets. Use the past simple and the past participle

Activity by Serena

Peter __ all his wages and didn't plan for the future.(spend)

My brother has already ___ with this problem. (deal)

I have just ___ them the receipt. (send)

The company has __ a new motorway to avoid traffic jams. (build)

When they arrived, we had already ___ all their money on drinks. (spend)

My aunt really ___ her son. She gave him everything he wanted. (spoil)

Why did you say that? You have ___ the fun for everybody! (spoil)

My dad ___ me some money to buy a new car. (lend)

She ___ with the press in two minutes. (deal)

They ___ lots of new hotels. (build)


Gran ___ us a beautiful Christmas card. (send)

The banks have traditionally ___ money to people to buy properties. (lend)


Verbs are the same in Past Simple and Past Participle, receive an -d/-ed/t suffix but change one or more vowels.

For example: leave > left> left

Created by blogdeserena

Irregular verbs class 2

Write the correct form of the verb in brackets. Use the past simple and the past participle

Activity by Serena

The supermaket had __ the shopping home before they arrived. (bring)

Before he lost the match, he had ___ for hours. (fight)

The receptionist __ the way to the bedrooms. (lead)

I ___ the rat by its tail. (hold)

Before she retired, she had ___ maths for thirty years. (teach)

My grandparents __ the house before the WWII. So it's very old. (buy)

He fell off a tree and injured his leg. The branch hadn't __ his weight. (hold)

You have ___ me hundreds of lies! I don't believe you anymore. (tell)

Tom __ the hungry dog home. (bring)

He was arrested because he had __ stolen property. (sell)

An ancient Roman villa was ___ by the archaeologist. (find)

I haven't seen Jess this afternoon. I think she ___ early. (leave)

My father always __ us stories before we went to sleep. (tell)

When we were kids we ___ a wallet full of money and credit cards. Of course we immediately took it to the police station. (find)

He has __ the team to victory because he always gives them support. (lead)

The team ___ the game in the last minute. (lose)

He's just ___ the office. (leave)

When she woke up the next day she ___ dizzy and sick. What had happened the previous night? (feel)

He __ German at a language school. (teach)

He had __ happy about the tests and didn't expect to fail. (feel)

They have ___ the lion that escaped from the zoo. (catch)

We have already ___ the food for the party. What do you mean you're going to cancel it? (buy)

We ___ the loan on the house last year. (pay)

That shop ___ home-made food but they couldn't compete against the supermarket. (sell)

She had __ for everything. (pay)

I have already __ that! Why do you repeat everything I say? (say)

The police __ the robber before he escaped. (catch)

I hadn't ___ about Jenny's birthday. (think)

My grandfather ___ against some the most famous boxers of his time. (fight)

My grandmother always ___ that grandad was very handsome. (say)

Peter ___ he had made a mistake. (think)

I've __ my keys. (lose)


In this group the Past Simple usually has -ed but the Past Participle had -(e)n.

This is a small group and I suppose I’ll be adding some more if I can remember any.

For example: show > showed > shown although for the past participle you can usually use both forms, -ed and -wn.

Created by blogdeserena

Irregular verbs class 3

Write the correct form of the verb in brackets. Use the past simple and the past participle

Activity by Serena

She quickly __ the rip in her dress and went off to the job interview. (sew)

What surprised me was the comparison with that first photo of the man they'd ___ us the other week. (show)

The Liverpool - Real Madrid final was a real disaster as police __ confusion among the football fans of both teams. (sow)

We’ve ___ that field with wheat. (sow)

The brave little tailor claimed he had ___ wealthiest men of the kingdom. (sew)

I ___ them where the gun was. (show)


One or both of the forms is/are completely different.

The past tense doesn’t have a suffix although it may change a vowel, but the Past Participle has an -(e)n suffix and the base vowel changes or both changes may happen.

For example: give > gave > given

Created by blogdeserena

Irregular verbs class 4

Write the correct form of the verb in brackets. Use the past simple and the past participle

Activity by Serena

Our father had ___ us permission to stay out until late. (give)

The mountaineer ___ to death before they managed to rescue him. (freeze)

She __ a house that was exactly like the house she lived in when she was a girl. (draw)

The man ___ a letter and left. (write)

Somebody ___ a stone through the window. (throw)

He accidently ___ his grandmother's precious vase. (break)

He's ___ six champion horses this year. (ride)

He couldn't take part in the game because he had __ his leg. (break)

The clothes that are ___ away are frequently put in landfills. (throw)

Children ___ their bicycles to school before. Now there's too much traffic. (ride)

They had __ to go to Greece for their holidays. (choose)

Mary was so good at drawing that in an hour she had ___ lots of illustrations for the cards. (draw)

When I was little I was __ by a dog. (bite)

He ___ the apple tree until the ripe fruit fell to the ground. (shake)

They ___ along the road until they reached the park. (drive)

I ___ the chocolate cake because it's my favourite. (choose)

His shirt didn't fit him because he had ___ during his illness. (grow)

The woman ___ two coins and a phone number. (give)

The lake had ___ during the winter storm. (freeze)

Please turn the telly down the telly! You've ___ up the baby. (wake)

I don't want this skirt. It's already been ___. (wear)

At school we  ___ a horrible uniform. (wear)

The trees were __ over by the storm. (blow)

I'm ready to leave. I've just ___ the assignment and hope to get a good mark. (write)

She __ into a juicy apple. (bite)

Tom and Jack had ___ through several towns before they reached the seaside resort. (drive)

Peter ___ out the eighty candles on his birthday cake. (blow)

Who has __ the mixture? They have ruined it! (shake)

My father __ the most amazing vegetables on his small plot of land. (grow)

I ___ up several times this night. I don't seem to be able to get any decent sleep. (wake)


In this group the vowel changes in one or both. There are no other changes.

For example: begin > began > begun

Created by blogdeserena

Irregular verbs class 5

Write the correct form of the verb in brackets. Use the past simple and the past participle

Activity by Serena

Jenny Smith ___ across the Channel when she was sixteen. (swim)

The show had ___ by the time we reached the building. (begin)

Her wealthy parents-in-law had ___ them a house on the cost.(give)

Sam ___ her the keys back and said he was sorry. (give)

By the time she was 25 she had already ___ a successful novelist. (become)

His arms were aching. He had ___ for over an hour. (swim)

He ___ to speak and everybody looked at him in amazement. (begin)

She had ___ her best number when the show was interrupted by a man shouting. (sing)

Last Christmas we ___ carols with the Jones family. (sing)

The dog __ all the water. It was very thirsty. (drink)

I'm not surprised you feel ill. You've __ all the wine. (drink)

He __ rich during the crisis. (become)

It's no wonder he went on trip around the world after he had___ all that money on the lottery. (win)

Real Madrid __ although Liverpool played really well. (win)


All the verbs are the same!

For example: put > put > put

Other verbs of this group are: burst, cut, hit, let and set.


In this group we see verbs that don’t share any features. As the verbs below.

For example: go > went > gone – Be > was/were > been

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