Using Active and Passive Voices

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Active voice means that a sentence has a subject that acts upon its verb, whereas passive voice means that the same subject is a recipient of the verb's action.
1. Using Active and
Passive Voice
2. Would you rather?
Watch Lebron play basketball or
some random person sitting in the
3. Verbs and Voice
Voice is the form a verb
takes to indicate
whether the subject of
the verb performs or
receives the action.
There are two types of
voice: active voice and
passive voice.
4. Active Voice
Active voice is used to show that the
subject of the sentence is performing
or causing the action.
Lebron threw the basketball before
the buzzer.
Lebron shot the basketball from the
free throw line.
Lebron scored three points.
5. Passive Voice
Passive voice is used when the subject
is the recipient of the action.
The ball was thrown by Lebron.
The basket was shot by Lebron.
The score was made by Lebron.
6. Why does it matter?
7. Why does it matter?
 Active voice is more direct and concise.
 Passive voice is usually wordier.
 Active voice is like watching Lebron
 Passive voice is like watching gum
stuck on the bleachers in the stands.
8. When would you WANT to use
passive voice?
 When intentionally trying to hide the subject of the
For example, a politician might say, “The mistake was
made by someone.” Hiding the subject helps him/her
hide the blame.
 When intentionally trying to minimize the guilt of the
For example, a cheating boyfriend might say, “Cheating
was committed by me.”
 When passive voice better emphasizes the main point of
the message, such as “Children were harmed by the
drunk driver.”
9. Form of Passive Voice Verbs
 The passive voice requires a "double verb"
and will always consist of a form of the verb
"to be" and the past participle (usually the
"en/ed/t" form) of another verb.
 Example:
Active: John baked the bread.
Passive: The bread was baked by
John. (Was is a form of the verb
10. Form of Passive Voice Verbs
 Writers should be familiar with the
forms of "to be" , often called linking
verbs, so that they can easily identify
the passive voice in their work.
 Review the forms of "to be":
 am, is, are, was, were, be,
being, been
11. Form of Passive Voice Verbs
 Note the forms of "to be" in the examples
of the verb "to kick" in various forms of the
passive voice:
is kicked----------------had been kicked
was kicked-------------is going to be
is being kicked---------will be kicked
has been kicked-------can be kicked
was being kicked------should be kicked
12. Form of Passive Voice Verbs
 Examples:
 Passive: The cookies were eaten by
the children.
 Active: The children ate the cookies.
 Passive: The tunnels are dug by the
 Active: The gophers dug the
13. Weird Version of this lesson…
14. Let’s Practice
Label the following sentences ACTIVE or PASSIVE.
1. Louise made the chocolate cake.
2. The chocolate cake was made by Louise.
3. The package was advertised by the travel agent.
4. The travel agent advertised the package.
5. The chain was broken by my brother.
6. My brother broke the chain on my bike.
7. I hemmed the prom dress.
8. The prom dress was hemmed by me.
9. The pencil on the floor was broken by him.
10.He broke the pencil on the floor.
15. Let’s Practice
 Directions: Change the sentences below to the
active voice.
1. The statue is being visited by hundreds of
tourists every year.
2. My books were stolen by someone yesterday.
3. These books had been left in the classroom by a
careless student.
4. Coffee is raised in many parts of Hawaii by
plantation workers.
5. The house had been broken into by someone
while the owners were on vacation.
16. Rewrite the following paragraph
in the active voice.
Last summer our house was painted by me.
First, the exterior was washed using warm water
and a mild detergent. Then all of the chinks in
the walls were sealed with putty. After the
putty had had a chance to dry, the exterior
could be painted. A latex paint was used
because it is easy to apply and cleans up with
water. A whole week was needed to finish this
part of the job. A color was used that was very
close to the original color. When the job was
finished, a great deal of satisfaction was felt by
me. Even my dad said that a good job was