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Hello. I've looked on the internet for an easy definition of "participle." I'm getting very complicated (and different) meanings. Is there a simple way to explain what a participle is to my ESL students? Please help me if you can. Thank you.
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I don't know how 'easy' you can make it and still be inclusive, Guest, but a participle is just the name for a non-finite (no tense) verb form ending in -ing or -ed/-en, and used either (1) as an adjective (the tired employee, the running deer) or (2) as part of a periphrastic (multi-word) finite verb (has been tired, will be running).

That is essentially all there is to a participle.
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Instead of trying to explain in an all-inclusive way, why not try just focusing on one thing at a time? Since the past participle is probably the most used, why not concentrate on past participles until students have mastered those? When you present verbs, you probably go through the standard paradigm "go, went, gone; take, took, taken; ...". So for students being presented the idea for the first time, I doubt you need more than this definition: "The past participle is the third of the three principal parts of a verb."

Emotion: smile