How to Teach Prepositions: Prepositional Phrases & Reading Fluency

In order to become stellar readers, children will greatly benefit from the practice of finding prepositional phrases in text. One reason for this is to help them read more fluently. Think about the phrasing fluent readers practice that makes their reading fluid and easy to understand. When you come to a paragraph like the following one, learning to recognize prepositional phrases will help with this fluency and even with reading comprehension.
Reader Pages
Your student can either read a section like this one word at a time, or you can take advantage of prepositional phrases to help them learn to read with fluency and flow.

How to Teach

Identification of Prepositional Phrases
Write the paragraph from above on your whiteboard. Have your students identify the prepositional phrases and underline them. You can also give each student a copy of their own and have them underline and/or highlight the prepositional phrases.
Prepositional Phrases
Practicing Reading Fluency/Phrasing

Passage 1

  1. Write the following passage on your whiteboard, using red for prepositions. Ensure that the students understand that the red words are prepositions. You can also give each student their own copy.

    Prepositions Passage 1

  2. Have your students read the passage several times, each time increasing their focus on phrasing (red words indicate the beginning of a phrase). Over time, they will gain expertise with instantly recognizing these prepositions that announce the arrival of a flowing prepositional phrase.

Passage 2

  1. Write the following passage on your whiteboard, using red for prepositions. Ask your students to notice which little word seems to frequently follow a preposition (the). Underline "the" in the passage. This little clue might make it easier for them to spot prepositional phrases. 

    Prepositions Passage 2

Interactive Activity

Make interactive posters for the two passages. Have your students draw the yard with the objects listed. Draw the dog and cut it out. Have the students move the dog to each object as they read the passage. Repeat this process for the toddler in the house. 

 Prepositions Interactive Activity

Full Body Exercise

Connect full body exercise to this lesson to reinforce the concepts taught. Movement serves as a catalyst, awakening the brain to the process of learning and effectively anchoring new information into the neural networks. For kinesthetic learners, in particular, movement is not just beneficial but essential for optimizing the learning experience. 

  • Find a space big enough for students to move safely. Tell them that you are going to shout out instructions for them to follow. Each move will include a preposition; have them yell out what the preposition is once they reach their specified location. Example: "Run AROUND the slide." Feel free to mix it up and improvise. You could also allow students to take turns giving instructions.


Prepositional phrases go hand-in-hand with reading fluency. Have fun with your students, integrating multisensory components in your lessons. This fun and engaging approach has proven to be effective, especially when other approaches have fallen short. Try it today and experience the difference!

Please contact us with any questions; we are here for you!

For more on teaching prepositions, check out these previous blogs:

Parts of Speech Simplified

How to Teach Prepositions: Location

How to Teach Prepositions: Time




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