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An Introduction to Verbs of Motion for Beginning Russian Students
Vinton Eberly
Central Valley High School
Spokane Valley, WA


Produced as part of
CREES Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad Program for K-12 Teachers:
Understanding Contemporary Russia, 2010


Overview: Russian verbs of motion (VOM) are complicated and often confusing to
students learning Russian. The nature of Russian high school texts is to introduce these
verbs late in first year of study. In contrast, the use of the English form of ‘going’ is
prevalent and not always tied to mere motion. This unit attempts to introduce the Russian
verbs of motion at an earlier stage in order to stave off the confusion generated by the
variable meaning of the English going with the specific use of the Russian ‘going’. In
other words, I am going to introduce these verbs at an earlier stage of study.

There are 4 major lessons introducing the four main verbs of motion in Russian. Each
lesson is accompanied by a PowerPoint presentation plus practice. After a review lesson
and practice, students take a short test to measure understanding of the verbs of motion.

The lessons are designed to be stand alone lessons dealing with the introduction of VOM.
They are best suited for use after the students are initially aware of the accusative case,
due to the connection of VOM and the accusative case. This is not a hard and fast
necessity as with rote memory students can answer questions and make statements using
VOM and destinations with feminine endings in the accusative case.
V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 2


Lesson Plan Title: Introduction to Verbs of Motion – Lesson 1
Concept / Topic to Teach: Introduction to Verbs of Motion and идти

General Goal(s): What are VOMs in Russian? Conjugation of идти; ‘to go by foot’

Specific Objectives: terminology of VOMs; conjugation of идти

Required Materials:
PowerPoint – Part 1
Handouts – VOM part 1 practice – идти; “Russian Verbs of Motion – An Introduction
for Beginners” handout

Anticipatory Set (Lead-In): Discuss present continuous form of ‘going’ in English and
how it is used, i.e. ‘We are going to have a test’ vs. ‘I am going to lunch’

Step-By-Step Procedures:
1. Discuss what VOM is in Russian
2. Introduce basic terms
a. aspect
b. direction
c. modes/mean of movement
d. prefixes (brief explanation of how prefixes affect meaning)
3. Present PowerPoint introduction to VOM and verb идти
4. Solicit questions/ clarify as needed
5. Students complete practice
6 Correct practice as class (this lesson or next day if assigned as homework)

Plan for Independent Practice: Complete handout – verb conjugation and sentence
completion/fill in the blank

Closure (Reflect Anticipatory Set): Reminder that going in Russian is tied to movement;
ask where students are going next (Я иду на (следующий) урок.)
V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 3


Lesson Plan Title: Lesson 2 –VOM
Concept / Topic to Teach: by foot vs. by vehicle; ехать

General Goal(s): conjugation of VOM ехать; contrast of going by foot vs. going by
vehicle

Specific Objectives: conjugation of ехать

Required Materials:
PowerPoint – Part 2
Handouts – VOM part 2 practice – ехать

Anticipatory Set (Lead-In): Reminder of previous lesson about VOM and English use of
going

Step-By-Step Procedures:
1. Review lesson 1 - what VOM is in Russian
2. Review vehicle vocabulary presented earlier in course.
3. Present PowerPoint introduction to VOM and verb ехать
4. Solicit questions/ clarify as needed
5. Students complete practice
6 Correct practice as class (this lesson or next day if assigned as homework)

Plan for Independent Practice: Complete handout – verb conjugation and sentence
completion/fill in the blank

Closure (Reflect Anticipatory Set): Have students respond to prompt in Russian or
English: How do you get to school? What trips do you make more than once a week?
What trips do you make one way?

V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 4


Lesson Plan Title: Lesson 3 – VOM
Concept / Topic to Teach: the indeterminate verb ходить

General Goal(s): Meaning of ходить and its conjugation patterns; multi-directional and
indeterminate uses

Specific Objectives: conjugation of ходить

Required Materials:
PowerPoint – Part 3
Handouts – VOM part 3 practice – ходить

Anticipatory Set (Lead-In): Review of means of transportation; what is this? (Vocab.
review using pictures)

Step-By-Step Procedures:
1. Review previous lessons
2. Review grammar vocabulary from lesson 1 unidirectional/multidirectional/aspect)
3. Present PowerPoint introduction to VOM and verb ехать
4. Solicit questions/ clarify as needed
5. Students complete practice
6 Correct practice as class (this lesson or next day if assigned as homework)

Plan for Independent Practice: Complete handout – verb conjugation and sentence
completion/fill in the blank

Closure (Reflect Anticipatory Set): Answer in Russian questions about habitual trips
students make by foot. Куда ты ходишь каждый день? Я хожу в бибилотеку.
V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 5


Lesson Plan Title: Lesson 4 – VOM
Concept / Topic to Teach: the verb ездить

General Goal(s): Meaning of ездить and its conjugation patterns; use in habitual,
indeterminate and multidirectional uses

Specific Objectives: conjugation of ездить

Required Materials:
PowerPoint – Part 4
Handouts – VOM part 4 practice – ездить

Anticipatory Set (Lead-In): Elaborate about trips the teacher has made to other cities/
countries, emphasizing the round trip aspect of the trips.

Step-By-Step Procedures:
1. Review previous lessons
2. Review vocabulary from lesson 1 (unidirectional/multidirectional/aspect)
3. Present PowerPoint introduction to VOM and verb ездить
4. Solicit questions/ clarify as needed
5. Students complete practice
6 Correct practice as class (this lesson or next day if assigned as homework)

Plan for Independent Practice: Complete handout – verb conjugation and sentence
completion/fill in the blank

Closure (Reflect Anticipatory Set): Students elaborate on trips made during breaks and
vacations. Куда ты ездил(а)? В прошлом году я ездил в Россию.
V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 6

Lesson Plan Title: Lesson 5 – VOM
Concept / Topic to Teach: Review of Russian verbs of motion

General Goal(s): Practice of Russian VOM

Specific Objectives: game playing using Russian VOM

Required Materials: Game boards, markers, dice, game cards

Anticipatory Set (Lead-In): Review conjugation of VOM, translate practice sentences

Step-By-Step Procedures:
1. Review previous lessons
2. Explain how game is played; demonstrate game
3. Break students into groups for game
4. Solicit questions/ clarify as needed
5. Students play game
6 Monitor game playing; answer questions as needed.

Plan for Independent Practice: Study for test.

Closure (Reflect Anticipatory Set): Remind students that verbs of motion are used as
much in Russian as in English and it is important to have a solid foundation in them.
Assign test date.

V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 7

Russian Verbs of Motion – An Introduction for Beginners
Learning about the verbs of motion can be one of the hardest concepts in the Russian
language. It is not so difficult if you take them one step at a time. However complex an
idea it may seem, it is an important concept, since motion verbs are among the most used
in any language. This is confusing to many English speakers learning Russian as we use
‘going’ as a helping verb in ways that do not parallel Russian use of the going verb. (i.e
‘We are going to have a test on Friday.’)
A verb of motion is simply a verb that moves you or someone or something else from one
place to another. Examples include verbs like “go”, “walk”, “run”, “swim” or “fly”. The
reason they are special in Russian is that Russian uses special prefixes and different
forms to explain even more with one word.
Some basics and terms:
Aspect - Russian has a concept termed aspect. Basically, Russian distinguishes between
a completed action (or one that will be completed) and on-going or habitual action in the
present tense. We refer to this idea of action vs. completion as aspect. Therefore,
Russian has imperfective (emphasis on action) and perfective (emphasis on completion)
forms for every verb. Verbs come in aspectual pairs.
Direction - Russian verbs of motion determine whether the motion is in one direction
(unidirectional) or in many directions or habitual (multidirectional.) Understanding if
moving has a round trip implied (multidirectional) or is talking about a one way trip
(unidirectional) helps us choose the correct form of the verb of motion.
Means or mode of transport – Russian has different verbs to use if you are going by
foot or if you are going by vehicle. They are often paired up together to help in
memorizing. There are advanced verbs that deal with flying, swimming and others, but
for the time being we will concentrate on the basic foot/vehicle verbs.
Prefixes – For the time being we will deal only with basic verbs of motion. There are a
number of prefixes we can add to the verbs to refine their meanings, such as entering vs.
exiting. The added nuances of these meanings are something we will study later.


V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 1
Russian 1B – Verbs of Motion –Test Имя


А. Conjugate these verbs in their present tense forms:


идти ходить ехать ездить
Я
Ты
Он, она, оно
Мы
Вы
Они


Б. Choose between going by foot or going by vehicle and complete the sentence,
conjugating the verb as needed.

25. Завтра Лена ___________________ в Москву.
26. Грегорий сейчас ___________________ в парк.
27. Когда ты ___________________ на дачу?
V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 2
28. Василий и Анастасия ___________________ во Флориду в июне.
29. Вы ___________________ в школу сегодня?
30. Куда он ___________________?
31. Я ___________________ в библиотеку после урока.
32. Летом мы ___________________ в Японию.
33. После этого урока мы ______________________ на шестой урок.
34. Родители ___________________ во Владивосток.
35. Когда ты ___________________ домой?
В. Choose between indeterminate and determinate. Сonjugate the verb to fit the
sentence.

36. Маша и Вера _________________________ в магазин.
37. Антон сейчас _________________________ в институт на такси.
38. Мы часто _________________________в библиотеку заниматься.
39. Вы _________________________в библиотеку?
40. Вы обычно _________________________в библиотеку заниматься?
41. Лена _________________________в кино.
42. Они редко _________________________ на лекцию.
43. В пятницу я _________________________в Новгород.
44. Борису 16 лет и каждый день _________________________ в школу на
машине.
45. Я никогда не _________________________ на этот урок.
46. Они вчера* _________________________на концерт.
47. Вы _________________________в библиотеку сегодня?
V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 1


идти - Practice with the verb ‘to go’

Write down the present tense forms for идти

Я Мы
Ты Вы
Он, она Они

Complete these sentences with the correct form of идти.

1. Мы _________________________ на работу. (идти)
2. Куда ты _________________________? (идти)
3. Я _________________________ на урок.
4. Они _________________________на лекцию. (идти)
5. Борис _________________________ в школу.
6. Вы _________________________в библиотеку? (идти)
7. Лена _________________________в кино. (идти)
8. Маша и Вера _________________________ в магазин.
9. Это письмо долго _______________________ в Россию.


V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 1


ехать - Practice with the verb ‘to go’

Write down the present tense forms for ехать

Я Мы
Ты Вы
Он, она Они

Complete these sentences with the correct form of ехать.

1. Михаил _________________________ на работу на троллейбусе. (ехать)
2. Куда вы _________________________? (ехать)
3. Ольга _________________________ на урок. (ехать)
4. Они _________________________в больницу на скорой помощи. (ехать)
5. Антон _________________________ в институт на такси. (ехать)
6. Вы _________________________в библиотеку сегодня? (ехать)
7. В пятницу мы _________________________в Новгород. (ехать)
8. Маша и Вера _________________________ в магазин. (ехать)
9. Куда ты _________________________в воскресенье? (ехать)
10. В субботу я _________________________на дачу. (ехать)

V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 1


ходить - Practice with the verb ‘to go’

Write down the present tense forms for ходить

Я Мы
Ты Вы
Он, она Они

Complete these sentences with the correct form of ходить.
1. Мы _________________________ каждый вторник в магазин? (ходить)
2. Куда ты _________________________в школу? (ходить)
3. Я никогда не _________________________ на этот урок. (ходить)
4. Они редко _________________________ на лекцию. (ходить)
5. Вы обычно _________________________в библиотеку заниматься.
(ходить)
6. Борису 6 лет и он _________________________ в школу. (ходить)
7. Маша и Вера часто _________________________ в магазин. (ходить)
8. Лена всегда _________________________ в кино. (ходить)

часто - often всегда - always обычно – usually никогда не - never
каждый – every (used with day, hour, minute, month, etc.) Agrees in gender and number!

V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 1


ездить - Practice with the verb ‘to go’

Write down the present tense forms for ездить

Я Мы
Ты Вы
Он, она Они

Complete these sentences with the correct form of ездить.
1. Ты _________________________ на дачу? (ездить)
2. Ольга всегда _________________________в Москву. (ездить)
3. Я никогда не _________________________ на мотоцикле. (ездить)
4. Вы не _________________________ каждый день в магазин? (ездить)
5. Они вчера* _________________________на концерт. (ездить)
6. Борису 16 лет и он _________________________ в школу. (ездить)
7. Мы обычно _________________________в библиотеку заниматься.
(ездить)
8. Мама и папа часто _________________________ в Калифорнию. (ездить)

часто - often всегда - always обычно – usually никогда не - never
каждый – every (used with day, hour, minute, month, etc.) Agrees in gender and number!
*вчера - yesterday


V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 1



Complete these sentences with the correct form of the verb идти или ехать.


1. Во вторник Лена ___________________ в Москву.
2. Когда ты ___________________ на дачу?
3. Он ___________________ в школу.
4. Куда вы ___________________?
5. Я ___________________ в библиотеку после урока.
6. Мы скоро ___________________ в Владивосток.
7. Пётр сейчас ___________________ в парк.
8. Летом мы ___________________ в Калининград.
9. После этого урока мы ______________________ на пятый урок.
10. Папа и мама ___________________ во Францию в июне.
11. В субботу Ларисса ___________________ на дискотеку.
12. Сегодня вечером она ___________________ на лекцию.
13. Когда ты ___________________ домой?
14. Вера Михайловна ___________________ в больницу на скорой помощи.
15. Когда вы ___________________ в Германию?
16. В апреле русские ___________________ в Калифорнию.
17. Миша ___________________ на урок.
18. Катя ___________________ на концерт.
19. Петя ___________________ в Сочи завтра.
V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 1
Russian 2 Verbs of Motion Practice


Exercise 1. Unidirectional (Determinate) or Multidirectional (Indeterminate) verb?
Choose from the options provided.


1. Я каждый день ___________ на работу пешком.
иду хожу

2. - Привет, Таня! Куда ты ___________?
- В магазин. Хочу купить фрукты.
идёшь ходишь

3. Мой папа всегда ____________ на работу на машине.
едет ездит

4. Мама обычно ___________ на работу пешком.
идёт ходит

5. Студенты часто ___________ в университет на автобусе.
едут ездят

6. - Зравствуйте, Павел Иванович! Куда вы _____________?
едете ездите

Exercise 2. Choose between идти and ходить. Use the appropriate present tense
form of each verb.

Образец: Андрей редко ходит в библиотеку.

1. Каждое утро Таня _______________________ в бассейн.

2. Я часто _______________________ в кино.

3. Куда _______________________ эти студенты?

4. Мы редко _______________________ в театр.

5. - Привет, Денис! Куда ты _______________________?

- Я _______________________ в университет.



V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 2
Exercise 3. Choose between ехать and ездить. Use the appropriate present
tense form of each verb.

Образец: Анна часто ездит на работу на машине.


1. Я всегда _______________________ в университет на автобусе.

2. Мой друг часто _______________________ в Россию.


3. - Ты знаешь, куда _______________________ эти машины?
- Думаю, что они _______________________ в центр.

4. Мои родители всегда _______________________ на работу на машине.

5. Каждую субботу мы _______________________ на дачу.


We often go to the
movies.




I go to school every
day.




At 8 o’clock I go to
school.




Where are you
going?




I am going to
Moscow on
Saturday.




My parents are
going to the movies.

We were at the
disco yesterday.




We went to the
library yesterday




On Monday we are
going to Russia.




She rarely goes to
the post office.




Let’s go to Baskin
and Robbins
together!




Are you going to the
classroom now?

Ivan is going home
now.




I am going to work
at 5 o’clock.




My friend is going
to Japan soon.




Where are they
going tomorrow?




Mother is going to a
concert on
Wednesday.




He is going to the
dorm at 2 o’clock.


Я (идти)




Ты (идти)




Она (идти)




Мы (идти)




Вы (идти)




Я (ехать)




Ты (ехать)



Она (ехать)




Мы (ехать)




Вы (ехать)




Они (ехать)




Ты (ездить)




Она (ездить)




Мы (ездить)



Вы (ездить)




Они (ездить)




Я (ходить)




Ты (ходить)




Она (ходить)




Мы (ходить)




Вы (ходить)


Det. – Foot
Библиотека



Det. – Foot
Магазин



Det. – Foot
Работа



Det. – Foot
Кино



Det. – Foot
Музей



Det. – Foot
Школа



Det. – Foot
Баскин-Роббинс


Det. – Foot
Концерт



Det. – Foot
Гостиная



Det. – Foot
Дом



Det. – Foot
Бассейн



Det. – Foot
Цирк



Det. – Foot
Церковь



Det. – Foot
Аптека


Det. – Foot
Почта



Det. – Foot
Кафе



Det. – Foot
Ресторан



Det. – Foot
Дискотека



Det. – Foot e
Банк



Det. – Foot
Стадион



Det. – Foot
Дача


Indet. – Foot
Библиотека



Indet. – Foot
Магазин



Indet. – Foot
Работа



Indet. – Foot
Кино



Indet. – Foot
Музей



Indet. – Foot
Школа



Indet. – Foot
Баскин-Роббинс


Indet. – Foot
Концерт



Indet. – Foot
Гостиная



Indet. – Foot
Дом



Indet. – Foot
Бассейн



Indet. – Foot
Цирк



Indet. – Foot
Церковь



Indet. – Foot
Аптека


Indet. – Foot
Почта



Indet. – Foot
Кафе



Indet. – Foot
Ресторан



Indet. – Foot
Дискотека



Indet. – Foot e
Банк



Indet. – Foot
Стадион



Indet. – Foot
Дача


Det. – Vehicle
Библиотека



Det. – Vehicle
Магазин



Det. – Vehicle
Работа



Det. – Vehicle
Кино



Det. – Vehicle
Музей



Det. – Vehicle
Школа



Det. – Vehicle
Баскин-Роббинс


Det. – Vehicle
Москва



Det. – Vehicle
Краснодар



Det. – Vehicle
Америка



Det. – Vehicle
Япония



Det. – Vehicle
Цирк



Det. – Vehicle
Церковь



Det. – Vehicle
Аптека


Det. – Vehicle
Почта



Det. – Vehicle
Кафе



Det. – Vehicle
Ресторан



Det. – Vehicle
Дискотека



Det. – Vehicle
Банк



Det. – Vehicle
Стадион



Det. – Vehicle
Дача


Indet. – Vehicle
Библиотека



Indet. – Vehicle
Магазин



Indet. – Vehicle
Работа



Indet. – Vehicle
Кино



Indet. – Vehicle
Музей



Indet. – Vehicle
Школа



Indet. – Vehicle
Баскин-Роббинс


Indet. – Vehicle
Москва



Indet. – Vehicle
Краснодар



Indet. – Vehicle
Америка



Indet. – Vehicle
Япония



Indet. – Vehicle
Цирк



Indet. – Vehicle
Церковь



Indet. – Vehicle
Аптека


Indet. – Vehicle
Почта



Indet. – Vehicle
Кафе



Indet. – Vehicle
Ресторан



Indet. – Vehicle
Дискотека



Indet. – Vehicle
Банк



Indet. – Vehicle
Стадион



Indet. – Vehicle
Дача

V Eberly, Fulbright-Hays Study Tour, Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan ◊ Page 1

VOM Game Rules:

Each player rolls the die to determine starting position. Low number begins, and then
play continues clockwise.

Roll the die to determine how many spaces to move

Draw a card from the pile corresponding to the color on which you land.

Give answer per card requirement. If a player cannot answer correctly, he/she moves
back to the previous spot.

If you land on a gray space – lose a turn.

Player must enter конец on a number equal to distance from конец. (3 spaces from
конец requires a 3 or less to advance.)

First player to reach конец wins.
Я (идти)

Ты (идти)

Она (идти)

Мы (идти)

Вы (идти)

Они (идти)

Я (ехать)

Ты (ехать)

Она (ехать)

Мы (ехать)

Вы (ехать)

Они (ехать)

Я (ездить)

Ты (ездить)

Она (ездить)

Мы (ездить)

Вы (ездить)

Они (ездить)


Я (ходить)

Ты (ходить)

Она (ходить)

Мы (ходить)

Вы (ходить)

Они (ходить)


Я иду в библиотеку.

Determinate – Vehicle

Determinate – Foot

Indeterminate – Vehicle

Indeterminate – Foot


Библиотека

Магазин

Кино

Цирк

Москва

Краснодар

Баскинс – Роббинс

Аптека

Оптика

Школа

Университет

Почта



Translate these sentences to Russian.


1. We often go to the movies.




2. I go to school every day.




3. Where are you going?




4. I am going to Moscow on Saturday.




5. My parents are going to the movies.




6. We were at the disco yesterday.




7. We went to the library yesterday




8. On Monday we are going to Russia.




9. She rarely goes to the post office.




10. Let’s go to Baskins and Robbins together!



11. Are you going to the classroom now?




12. At 8 o’clock I go to school.




13. Ivan is going home now.




14. I am going to work at 5 o’clock.




15. My friend is going to Japan soon.




16. Where are they going tomorrow?




17. Mother is going to a concert on Wednesday.




18. He is going to the dorm at 2 o’clock.


Я (идти)




Ты (идти)




Она (идти)




Мы (идти)




Вы (идти)




Я (ехать)




Ты (ехать)



Она (ехать)




Мы (ехать)




Вы (ехать)




Они (ехать)




Ты (ездить)




Она (ездить)




Мы (ездить)



Вы (ездить)




Они (ездить)




Я (ходить)




Ты (ходить)




Она (ходить)




Мы (ходить)




Вы (ходить)