Tips for Learning Adjectives and Adverbs

Adjectives and Adverbs

Tips for learning Adjectives and Adverbs

Can you identify the difference between an adjective and an adverb?  Let’s look at the difference between the two.


The job of an adjective is to describe a noun.  For example:  The party is in the red house.  Red describes the house and therefor is the adjective.

Other examples of adjectives:  Blue, exciting, fun, boring, distant, big, rude, good, fast, hard.


An adverb describes verbs.  For example:  He runs quickly.  Here we describe how the person runs.  It is easy to confuse an adjective with an adverb because many times they have the same root.  In our last example, quickly is an adverb made from the adjective quick.  This brings us to the rules about adverbs.

  • The most common way to form an adverb is to add the letters ly to the adjective.
  • When we see an adjective that ends in the letters ic, we can form the adverb by adding the letters ally.
  • When an adjective ends in the letter y, we can form the adverb by adding the letters ily.
  • Good, fast and hard all take on irregular forms when converted into adverbs.  They are well, fast and hard.

Adverb examples: 

quick (adj.) = quickly (adv.)

electronic (adj.) = electronically (adv.)

easy (adj.) = easily (adv.)

From the examples above, we can see that adjectives describe nouns and adverbs can describe how something is done.  However, adverbs can also describe how often something is done.  Let’s explore some examples.

always, usually, regularly, normally, often, sometimes, occasionally, rarely, seldom, never


In adverbs of frequency, the adverb usually goes before the main verb.

I always get up early on work days.

I never get up early on Saturdays.

In adverbs describing how something is done, we usually place the adverb at the end of the sentence.

He runs quickly.

She performed terrifically.

One trick you can use to identify different adverb types in a reading is to ask certain questions to yourself.  For example:

1.) How did he run?  Quickly

2.) How did she perform?  Terrifically

3.) How often does he get up early on work days?  Always

4.) How often does she get up early on Saturday? Never

To practice your adverbs, check out English Grammar 4 U online.

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About englishworkshopmexico

My name is James. I work as a teacher and marketer with English Workshop in Mexico City. We provide Business English courses to aspiring people who are looking to move up the career ladder or simply become more international. I have been with English Workshop for around two years and I very much enjoy the teaching and marketing profession.
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