Lessons about the active and passive voice should include explanations of the two, examples and use of the two. All lessons should include an objective that students demonstrate their understanding of the topic.
The first topic for a lesson on active and passive voice is an explanation that the active voice occurs when the subject of the sentence does the action. If students are not familiar with what the subject of the sentence is, teachers should include a brief reminder. The example sentence for this topic should be simple, such as "The dog bit the boy."
The next topic for the lesson should be an explanation that the passive voice occurs when the subject receives the action of the verb. The teacher should note that a "by the" construction often indicates the actor. An example sentence is "The boy was bitten by the dog." Teachers should also take time to review the formation of the verb phrase in the passive voice.
Another topic for the lesson is when to use the active versus passive voice. In general, students should choose the active voice because it creates clear and direct sentences. However, writers can use the passive voice to offer a rhetorical situation or when the actor is obvious. An example of the latter is "The suspect was arrested" because it's obvious police are doing the action.
A final topic for the lesson is how to change the passive into the active voice.