[quote=“ImaniOU”]Be careful, though. Phrasal verbs are a very tricky subject, both from a lexical and grammatical perspective.
It helps if your students are already familiar with common prepositions.
Example contrasting phrasal verbs from a simple verb+prepositional phrase:
The robbers held up the bank using machine guns and pantyhose masks.
The foundation that held up the bank crumbled away, causing the building to collapse.
The first example is a phrasal verb as the two words have nothing to do with the meaning when they are defined separately. The second is a verb+prepositional phrase (I think ) because the bolded phrase has the same meaning when you look at the words separately.
Anyway, you might want to slow it down a little and just teach one or two really useful colloquialisms or phrasal verbs a day and reward (verbally or using a tangible reward) when your students use that day’s phrase correctly.
A whole lesson of these things would be best reserved for more advanced classes.[/quote]
Actually, both are examples of phrasal verbs. They just mean two different things. One means “to rob” and the other means “to support”. You can substitute “rob” and “support” back into the examples to double check.
But ImaniOU has a very good point. Phrasal verbs are a very tricky subject. Take “look up” as an example.
The private investigator looked up the building and found the address.
The private investigator looked up the building and saw the suspect climbing onto the fire escape.
In the first sentence it’s a phrasal verb. In the second it’s a verb followed by a prepositional phrase. A good way to test whether or not something is a phrasal verb is to move the object.
With a phrasal verb you can move the object between the main verb and the verb complement (usually the word that looks like a preposition) and the meaning of the sentence is unchanged.
The private investigator looked up the building./The private investigator looked the building up.
If moving the object changes the meaning of the sentence or makes the sentence ungrammatical, then it is not a phrasal verb.