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The Direct Object

Are you familiar with direct objects (DOs)? You will be by the end of this lesson! But before we dive into the wonderful world of DOs, you need to have a little lesson on action verbs.

Some action verbs don't use any other words to complete their meaning. 

The book fell

The flower bloomed.

Some action verbs do use other words to complete their meaning. 

The boy kicked the ball

Elizabeth read the newspaper.

Do you see how ball and newspaper complete the meaning of the verbs kicked and read? 

Words that complete the meaning of action verbs like this are called direct objects

The type of verbs that need DOs to complete their meaning are called transitive active verbs. They transfer their action to the DO. (Check out the page on action verbs if you'd like more information.)

To find the DO, ask this question:


What/Whom did the (subject) (verb)?


When we fill in the blanks for those example sentences above, our question becomes...

What did the boy kick?

What did Elizabeth read?

The answers are ball and newspaper, and those words are also the DOs! Wasn't that easy?

Sentence Diagramming

DOs are diagrammed on the same horizontal line as the subject and the verb. 

Put a vertical line between the verb and the DO, but be sure that the line doesn't go below the horizontal line.


Your Turn

Find the verbs and DOs in the following sentences. 

1. The dog ate my homework. 

2. Our amazing soccer team won the trophy!

3. I love my friendly neighborhood.

4. Sam and Ava raked leaves yesterday.

5. My dad built a loft for my bed.


Answers

The transitive active verbs are in bold and the DOs are underlined.

1. The dog ate my homework

2. Our amazing soccer team won the trophy!

3. I love my friendly neighborhood.

4. Sam and Ava raked leaves yesterday.

5. My dad built a loft for my bed.


8 Handy Grammar Graphics

8 Handy Grammar Graphics gives you a fun and visual way to get started teaching or learning grammar and sentence diagramming. Yay!

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