New grammar concepts and rules start getting tricky by second grade! One of the trickier rules to teach 2nd grade students is when and how to use an apostrophe to show possession. We want to take the guesswork out of how to teach this skill with some engaging activities and resources your students are sure to love!
What are the rules for using an apostrophe to show possession?
Rules for singular nouns:
To change a singular noun to a singular possessive noun, add (‘s) after the noun.
Example: My dog’s name is Max.
What if the singular noun ends in s? The same rule stated above applies.
Example: Jess’s dog is named Max.
Rules for plural nouns:
To make a plural noun possessive, add the apostrophe at the end.
Example: The two dogs’ favorite toys are tennis balls.
A Quick Trick to Help With Apostrophe Placement
To check on whether you’ve put the apostrophe in the right spot, cover the apostrophe. What’s left in the word should be the owner.
Resources for Teaching Possessive Apostrophes
Here is a list of our favorite tools for modeling and practicing apostrophes and possessives.
Lucky Little Learners Resources
Grammar Day by Day gives kids daily practice of all language standards in isolation and in context. In this sample page, kids practice possessive nouns and the correct placement of apostrophes in two different ways – in single sentences, and also in a longer paragraph.
The possessive nouns “Fishing for Apostrophes” activity shown in the image above is from our Grammar Centers series. Kids get to go fishing for the correct word (with or without an apostrophe) to correctly complete sentences.
2nd Grade Spiral ELA, is a fantastic way to revisit previously taught ELA standards all year long. In the sample week shown above, take a look at how students practice how to correctly use apostrophes to show possession over the course of 5 days.
Download Spiral ELA HERE
Teach How to Use Apostrophes to Show Possession with Songs & Videos
This video gives a demonstration of how to use both singular and plural apostrophes to show possession using monsters in a cafe!
The simple song embedded in this artsy video is catchy and will help reinforce the rules for apostrophes and possessive nouns.
How to Teach Other 2nd Grade Grammar Skills:
Is it time for a new concept in grammar? We have a post for that!
1st Grade Review
Types of Sentences
Irregular Plural Nouns & Irregular Verbs
Possessive Nouns ~ You are here!
Shades of Meaning-Verbs & Adjectives
Similes & Metaphors