3 Adjective & Preposition Combinations

Grammar time! Today we’re looking at three combinations of words that you will see together frequently. When learning another language, it’s very helpful to learn and memorize combinations. This saves time, helps you recognize patterns, and explains weird rules that don’t make sense.

In English, there are some prepositions that almost always follow certain adjectives in certain situations. You will simply need to memorize these combinations and when to use them.

  • Remember, adjectives are words that describe nouns. Prepositions are words that show location or connect words.

Let’s look at three combinations.

Married to

This adjective – married – is used to indicate the condition of marriage. Married describes the person and their condition of marriage. We use the preposition “to” after the adjective “married” to show who shares in the condition of marriage.

It follows this pattern: married + to + person. It always follows this pattern, unless you’re forming a question.

Examples

  • I am married to him.
  • He is married to Julia.
  • Are you married to Fred?

Notice the pattern: married + to + person.

  • I am [married] + [to] + [him].
  • He is [married] + [to] + [Julia].
  • Are you [married] + [to] + [Fred]?

Incorrect Examples

  • I am married him. (This sentence doesn’t make sense because it doesn’t have the preposition.)
  • He is married Julia. (This sentence doesn’t make sense because it doesn’t have the preposition. Or it seems like you’re talking to someone named Julia and you mean to say, “He is married, Julia,” telling Julia that someone male is married.)
  • Are you married Fred? (This sentence seems like you’re talking to someone named Fred and mean to say, “Are you married, Fred?”, asking Fred if he is married.)

Be careful to not get confused between using the adjective “married” by itself and when you need to use the preposition with the adjective.

  • Adjective + preposition combo = who they are married to. Use the adjective + preposition combination when you want to show who the person shares the marriage status with. Who they are married to. Example: I am married to Sally.
  • Adjective = married status. Use only the adjective if you simply want to show that the person is married, to show their marriage status. Example: I am married.

StockSnap_SIGW8B10P3

Interested in

“Interested in” shows interest in a certain topic or subject. For example, if I have interest in doing something or pursuing an idea, I use this pattern of adjective + preposition / interested + in.

It follows this pattern: interested + in + topic. It always follows this pattern.

Examples

  • I am interested in painting.
  • He was interested in graphic design but not anymore.
  • We are interested in going with you to the park.

Note the pattern: interested + in + topic

Here’s the breakdown of the pattern for each example.

  • I am [interested] + [in] + [painting]. (Painting is the topic that you express interest in doing.
  • He was [interested] + [in] + [graphic design] but not anymore. (Graphic design is the topic.)
  • We are [interested] + [in] + [going with you to the park]. (The topic that we are expressing interest in doing is going to the park with you.)

Incorrect Examples

  • I am interested painting.
  • He was interested graphic design but not anymore.
  • We are interested going with you to the park.

All of these examples are missing the preposition “in” and don’t make sense.

Be careful not to get confused between the use of just the adjective “interested” and the adjective + preposition combination of “interested in”.

  • Adjective Only = referred interest. Use just the adjective “interested” to show interest in what the person already referred to. Example: Would you like to go to the movies with us? I am interested.
  • Adjective + Preposition Combo = specify where your interest is. Use the adjective + preposition combination when you want to specify where your interest is at or what interests you. Example: I am interested in going to the movies with you.

StockSnap_D8WS4HTCA9

Angry at

“Angry at” is a combination that expresses anger and describes someone who is angry and why they’re angry. When you’re angry at something or someone, you direct your anger towards that something or someone, usually because they did something to make you angry.

Examples

  • She was always angry at the dog for sleeping on her toes.
  • They are angry at the government.
  • I will be angry at you if you don’t do the dishes.

The pattern for this combination is: “angry” + “at” + “someone/something”.

  • She was always [angry] + [at] + [the dog] for sleeping on her toes. (The dog made her angry.)
  • They are [angry] + [at] + [the government]. (The government made them angry.
  • I will be [angry] + [at] + [you] if you don’t do the dishes. (You will make me angry if you don’t do the dishes.

Note that the last part of the combination is always an object or a person – the dog, the government, and you.

Be careful not to confuse the difference between just the adjective “angry” and the adjective + preposition combination of “angry at”.

  • Adjective + Preposition Combo = specify who or what. Use the adjective + preposition combination when you want to specify who or what made you angry. Example: I am very angry at you.
  • Adjective Only = anger. Use just the adjective “angry” when you simple want to express that you are angry. Example: I am very angry.

StockSnap_7DWDQY7PEW

Notice that in all three of these examples, you use the preposition with the adjective to specify details regarding the adjective. “Married to” specifies who you are married to. “Interested in” specifies what you’re interested in. “Angry at” specifies who you’re angry at.

Understanding, learning, and using these three combinations will help you become even more fluent in speaking and using English. The easiest way is to memorize this. When you use the adjective, remember that you probably need to use the preposition if you’re going to express more information.

And just for fun, check out this example with all three examples:

I am angry at you for being interested in getting married to that guy.

StofelaEnglish Signature

A vs. An: Which one do I use?

In English, there are two articles that mean the same thing but are different by one letter: “a” and “an”. These articles are used to show that there is one thing of something. It is also used to show that you’re not talking about something specific.

Examples:

  • Can you give me an apple?
  • I would like to buy a dress.
  • We went to the grocery store to find a box of cereal.

Notice that in these examples, there is only one thing – only one apple, one dress, one box of cereal. Also, you do not know which apple or which dress. There are no details showing you which one. It could be any apple or any dress or any box of cereal.

I know that when you’re trying to learn the big things in English, these small words may seem insignificant. There are a few reasons to learn the difference between these two words and how to use them properly.

  1. Be fluent. When you’re trying to become fluent, you need to identify the small things that you say or pronounce incorrectly so that you can narrow down your errors and mistakes. This will help you get to the point where you’re using less and less mistakes.
  2. Pronunciation. Using these articles correctly helps with correct pronunciation, surprisingly. Using the correct word before others will help you pronounce the following words correctly.
  3. Flow. In the same way that it helps with pronunciation, it also helps with the flow of your English. You will sound less choppy and more smooth when you’re speaking.

So what’s the difference? Which one do you use? Here are the rules:

Use “a” before a word that starts with a consonant. Use “an” before a word that starts with a vowel.

 

If you need a reminder of what a consonant or vowel is:

  • Consonant: all other letters that are not vowels
  • Vowel: the following letters – a, e, i, o , u

We use these articles in the following pattern: “a” or “an” + noun (or phrase indicating a noun) or object.

A/AN + NOUN

Examples of this pattern

  • an apple
  • a desk
  • a bottle of water
  • an elephant
  • an object
  • a piece of cake
  • an umbrella

In each example there is first the article (a/an) and then an object (or noun).

Examples of this pattern with sentences

  • Can you toss me an apple?
  • I just need a desk to work at.
  • She took a bottle of water to work.
  • An elephant is very large.
  • It can be an object of any kind.
  • It is a piece of cake.
  • I really need an umbrella right now.

Notice that the following examples use “a” because the following word starts with a consonant.

  • I just need a desk to work at.
  • She took a bottle of water to work.
  • It is a piece of cake.

Notice that the following examples use “an” because the following word starts with a vowel.

  • Can you toss me an apple?
  • An elephant is very large.
  • It can be an object of any kind.
  • I really need an umbrella right now.

At first when you’re trying to use the right article – a or an – it may take a second to think about which one is correct. Or you may correct yourself after you say the words. That is perfectly okay! It will take time to get used to it. And after time, it will come without you thinking about it. Just practice and practice. Try to correct yourself as you’re speaking or writing.

Exceptions

As always in English, there are a few exceptions to the rules.

  • Use “an” before a word that sounds like it starts with a vowel, such as “an hour”. Notice that in this word, you do not pronounce the “h” so it sounds like it starts with a vowel.
  • Use “a” before a word that sounds like it starts with a consonant, such as “a university.” Notice that in this word, the “u” letter makes a sound that sounds more like it starts with the letter “y”.

StofelaEnglish Signature

Collocations Starting with “Have”

English is full of collocations, which is a big word for a combination of certain words that frequently appear together. The individual meaning of the words doesn’t change but when combined, the meaning slightly changes.

Collocation = a combination of words that frequently appears together, starting with a verb

Learning collocations will help you recognize the meaning of certain phrases quickly and will provide you with more vocabulary.

Remember that the verb “to have” normally indicates possession but with these combinations, it means that the indicated happened.

Let’s look at some of the common combinations of words that start with the verb “have”.

Have fun

“Have fun” means to enjoy what you’re doing, to like what you’re doing.

Examples

  • Have fun at the party!
  • I had so much fun yesterday.
  • They have fun every time they go to the pool.

StofelaEnglish - have collocations (4)

Have a good time

“Have a good time” means the same thing as “have fun”. It means to enjoy what you’re doing.

Examples

  • Have a good time at the party!
  • I had such a good time yesterday.
  • They have a good time every time they go to the pool.

StofelaEnglish - have collocations (3)

Have a baby

“Have a baby” means to give birth. It is the process of delivering a baby. It can also be used to say that you’re pregnant.

Examples

  • We’re going to have a baby!
  • She had her baby yesterday.
  • It ‘s okay to have a baby at the hospital.

StofelaEnglish - have collocations (2)

Have a headache / Have a toothache

“Have a headache” means to feel pain in your head, a headache. “Have a toothache” means the same thing but in your tooth.

Examples

  • I have a headache right now.
  • You have had a toothache for the past week?
  • How long have you had your headache?

StofelaEnglish - have collocations (1)

Have an argument

“Have an argument” means to argue with someone else.

Examples

  • We had an argument last night.
  • She doesn’t want to have an argument with you.
  • They have an argument every night.

 

 

The more collocations that you learn, the more you’ll feel confident in using English. You’ll know how native English speakers really use these words and understand more of what is said.

StofelaEnglish Signature

10 Common Homophones

We all know that English is full of confusing words, vocabulary, spellings, and usage. One of the items in English that makes it so confusing is called a <homophone>.

Homophone = words that sound the same but are spelled differently and mean different things

You may confuse homophones when someone is speaking to you or when you’re watching TV. Homophones are confusing when you’re listening to English since the words sound the same. If you’re reading English, you may not notice that the words are homophones, since the spelling is different.

If you have a hard time remembering what a homophone is, split up the word: <homo> + <phone>. These Latin roots mean “the same” and “sound”. This can help you remember that homophone means the same sound.

StofelaEnglish_Homophone

Learning homophones will help you learn some of the most confusing words in English and take one more step in speaking English fluently. Let’s look at some of the most common homophones.

 

Blue / Blew

  • Blue = the color blue
  • Example: Would you like to paint the room the color blue or red?

StockSnap_M5IRQV8XLJ

  • Blew = the past tense of the verb “to blow”, which means to force air out of your mouth
  • Example: She blew the candles out on top of her birthday cake.

StockSnap_FF29114102

Which / Witch

  • Which = connecting word that indicates a choice between two things or connects two phrases
  • Example: Which flavor of ice cream do you want?
  • Example: I like chocolate ice cream, which is also your favorite flavor of ice cream.

 

  • Witch = a person that practices magic
  • Example: My sister likes to dress up as a witch for Halloween.

Than / Then

  • Than = a word to compare two things
  • Example: “Do you like chocolate ice cream more than vanilla ice cream?

StockSnap_3IDOWJT48O

  • Then = a word used to indicate the time frame
  • Example: Do the dishes and then you can watch TV.

StockSnap_P4C5M93ABL

Here / Hear

  • Here = indicate close proximity to you
  • Example: Can you come here for a minute?

StockSnap_L913H85MTJ

  • Hear = the verb to use your ears to perceive sound
  • Example: We hear the music at the concert very well, since we’re at the front.

StockSnap_NQSVRJOY0Y

Buy / By

  • Buy = to purchase something
  • Example: My cousin buys jam every Saturday.

StockSnap_MZUHQSQ9D1

  • By = a preposition to indicate location to something else
  • Example: The towel is by the sink.

StockSnap_30750U3GLA

There / Their / They’re

  • There = to show existence
  • Example: There is no time to go shopping today.

StockSnap_TN644DSUH1

  • Their = to show possession for more than one person, from a 3rd person perspective
  • Example: Their clothes are more expensive than ours.

Friendship Together Bonding Unity Youth Culture Concept

  • They’re = a contraction for the words “they are”, which is 3rd person plural for the verb “to be”
  • Example: They’re running away!

StockSnap_8T9Y244TK8

To / Two / Too

  • To = preposition, an infinitive starter
  • Example: Can you pass the cup to me?
  • Example: I like to eat ice cream.

StockSnap_183UHT407W

  • Two = the count of the number 2, between the numbers one and three
  • Example: Put two strawberries on top of my ice cream.

StockSnap_VILLZJY1XX

  • Too = more than normal, or used to indicate that you did something in addition to someone else
  • Example: I want ice cream, too!

It’s / Its

  • It’s = the contraction for the words “it is”, the 1st singular version of the verb “to be”
  • Example: It’s so delicious.

 

  • Its = to show possession for gender neutral, 1st person, singular
  • Example: Its not very happy.

StockSnap_5MEVW3C6GJ

Are / Our

  • Are = from the verb “to be”, used for 1st and 3rd person plural
  • Example: We are ready to eat ice cream.
  • Example: They are ready to carve pumpkins.

StockSnap_SVE1OS4ACL

  • Our = possessive pronoun for 1st person plural
  • Example: Our ice cream is better than yours.

Weather / Whether

  • Weather = the condition of temperature and moisture outside
  • Example: What will the weather be like tomorrow?

StockSnap_LEFBHVD76O

  • Whether = used to show comparison between two things or as a contraction
  • Example: Whether you want to eat ice cream or not, we are going to eat ice cream.

 

Practice these common homophones so that you can recognize the meaning of each word when someone uses it in conversation. You can start with the Common Homophone Worksheet to practice with. Let me know your answers in the comments!

StofelaEnglish Signature

Another v. A Other

Many times in English, native speakers know which word to use but have no idea why. If something is confusing for you as a learner of English, and the English native speaker can’t give you an explanation, it becomes even more confusing! When you can’t find someone to give you an answer, you can become frustrated and easily give up on English. And we don’t want that for you!

So let’s look at one of those confusing sets of words. The difference between “another” and “other” can be confusing since the two words are so similar. The word “other” can literally be found inside the word “another”. Native English speakers switch between these two words without thinking about which one to use. If you pay attention and listen to lots of English, you may be able to do the same without learning the difference. But if you’re like most people, you need to learn the difference in order to know which word to use properly.

Another

The word “another” is used for singular and countable nouns. It almost always comes before a noun. And it refers to something that isn’t specific – simply another something.

Look at the following examples to notice which word has to come after the word “another”.

  • Can you give me another piece of cake?
  • We can do it another day.
  • The two girls still have to catch another train in order to get home.
  • I asked for another sandwich.
  • You can sleep for another hour.

Notice that in these sentences, “another” always comes before a noun (piece, day, train, sandwich, hour) and the noun is singular and countable.

The following examples are INCORRECT.

  • Can you give me another pieces of cake?
  • We can do it another days.
  • The two girls still have to catch another trains in order to get home.
  • I asked for another sandwiches.
  • You can sleep for another hours.

Notice that in the incorrect examples, the nouns are plural. “Another” always refers to one thing (singular).

 

Other

The word “other” is used for plural or uncountable nouns. It almost always comes before a noun. And the noun does not refer to something specific.

Look at the following examples to notice the situations when to use “other”.

  • Other people don’t always notice me.
  • Steve has other information.
  • We can visit my other daughters.

Notice that in these examples, “other” always comes before a noun (people, information, daughters) and the nouns are either plural (people, daughters) or uncountable (information).

Look at the following examples to notice the situations when NOT to use “other”.

  • Another people don’t always notice me.
  • Steve has another information.
  • We can visit another daughters.

Notice that in the incorrect examples, “another” doesn’t make sense because the sentences refer to more than one thing.

 

So remember: “Another” is used for 1) singular and 2) countable nouns. “Other” is used for 1) plural or 2) uncountable nouns.

StofelaEnglish Signature

Grow Up v. Growing

The girl was growing while she grew up.

How can one sentence have two verbs that look exactly the same? And what does this sentence even mean? “To grow up” (grow up) and “to grow” (growing) are two more words that make up a pair of words in English that mean something different but look almost identical. Make sure to add it to your list!

The most importance difference between these two verbs is that one verb is a phrasal verb – “to grow up.”

Phrasal Verb: a verb that is made up of more than one word and changes the meaning when the combination of words is different

Read more about phrasal verbs and five important phrasal verbs to add to your vocabulary!

“To grow up” is a phrasal verb because of the addition of the word “up” at the end. That one word makes the meaning of this verb be different than the verb “to grow.”

Let’s look at each verb, what they mean, and how you can remember the difference between the two of them.

To Grow

“To grow” means to increase in size because of genetics. Things that we usually use with the verb “to grow” are plants and humans, although you may say that something grows in size. Remember: “to grow” is used for increase in size.

Examples

  • My plants grow really fast when I give them fertilizer with their water.
  • We can grow apples in our yard.
  • I grew three inches in one year.
  • The food is growing in size.
  • My baby is growing so fast!

StofelaEnglish - grow up vs. growing (1)

To Grow Up

“To grow up” means to increase in maturity, to change from one phase to another. We usually use the verb “to grow up” to talk about children, teenagers, or animals.

Examples

  • My children can’t grow up that fast! I’m not ready!
  • The puppy grew up and became a dog.
  • We can grow up and become adults.
  • My baby is growing up so fast!

StofelaEnglish - grow up vs. growing (2)

Differences

  1. Grow up is a phrasal verb. Grow is not a phrasal verb.
  2. To grow is to increase in size. To grow up is to increase in maturity.

Similarities

  1. We conjugate and use the two verbs in the same way.
  2. They use the same root word – grow.

 

Remember: “To grow” is to increase in size. “To grow up” is to increase in maturity, even though the word “up” would make you think that they’re getting larger.

StofelaEnglish Signature

Learn English with the Prefix “Pre”

In English, there are many roots of words (parts of words) that come from Latin. When a set of two to three letters makes up the beginning of a word and it is a Latin root, it is called a prefix.

Prefix = a set of letters that comes at the beginning of a word

There are many prefixes in English, such as the prefix “non-“. Each prefix has a certain definition. When you learn the definition of the prefix, you can more easily understand the meaning of new words, without needing to know the definition from the dictionary or asking someone. You can easily guess the meaning of the word since you know what the prefix means.

One common prefix is “pre-“. This prefix means “before”.

PRE- = before

Once you know that the prefix “pre-” means “before”, you can replace “pre” with the word “before” in order to know the definition of the word.

For example, in the word “preschool”. If you separate the prefix, the word becomes “pre – school”. You probably know the meaning of the word “school” and you now know the meaning of the prefix “pre”. Replace “pre” with before and you know that “preschool” means something before school. If you did not know the meaning of “preschool”, you could guess that it means something you do before school. In the dictionary, you can confirm that “preschool” is the school or the classes that you can go to before you go to normal school.

Let’s look at other words that include the prefix “pre”.

Predate

  • Pre + date
  • Before + date = before the date
  • Definition: the date of the object comes before something else or before the time
  • Example: My sister predates my brother since she was born before he was.

StofelaEnglish - prefix pre (2)

Prepay

  • Pre + pay
  • Before + pay = pay before
  • Definition: exchange money for item before you receive the item
  • Example: You can prepay for the book.

StofelaEnglish - prefix pre (1)

Prenatal

  • Pre + natal
  • Before + natal = before birth
  • Definition: the condition before birth
  • Example: We will do the surgery prenatal, meaning that the surgery will be performed before your baby is born.

StofelaEnglish - prefix pre (6)

Prehistoric

  • Pre + historic
  • Before + historic/history = before history
  • Definition: old, out of date
  • Example: That building is prehistoric!

StofelaEnglish - prefix pre (5)

Precaution

  • Pre + caution
  • Before + caution = before caution
  • Definition: do something before in order to prevent something bad from happening
  • Example: They make sure to take precaution before construction.

StofelaEnglish - prefix pre (4)

Precook

  • Pre + cook
  • Before + cook = before cook
  • Definition: cook before you eat or purchase
  • Example: Adam likes to purchase precooked meals.

StofelaEnglish - prefix pre (3)

Make English easier by learning prefixes! Learning a prefix gives you the ability to guess the definition of lots of words, without knowing before. What other words do you know start with the prefix “pre-“? Let me know in the comments!

StofelaEnglish Signature

Awhile v. A While Explained

The English language is full of words that are almost exactly the same but since they’re spelled differently, they mean something different. They can even be pronounced the same but mean something different!

Two of the confusing words are “awhile” and “a while”. The only difference is a space between the “a” and the “w”. The only difference! And yet they mean something completely different.

Once you learn the difference between the two words, you’ll be able to use them properly. Note that there probably won’t be a difference when you’re using these two words in speech, since they are pronounced the same. The importance of knowing the difference between these two will be important when you’re writing. For example, if you’re writing an essay or an application for college, then the difference will be important.

StofelaEnglish - awhile v. a while (1)

A While

First, let’s look at the word (even though it’s two) “a while”. Literally, the word “while” means a period of time. It is a noun, so you use it as a subject or object (usually object) in the sentence. You can replace “while” with the word “year” or “month” or any period of time.

Examples

  • It’s been a while since I’ve eaten ice cream.
  • For a while, you’ll have to stop eating ice cream.
  • It took a while to not want to eat ice cream.

Usually, these are the top three instances where you’ll use “a while”.

  • It’s been a while ….
  • For a while ….
  • It took a while …

Note that there is also the word “while” which acts as a conjunction (connecting two phrases). For example, “While she was sleeping, I ate ice cream.” In this case, it acts as a different word than “a while”. So be careful not to get confused!

If you’re ever confused or don’t know when to use “a while”, use it if you can replace it with the word “year” or “month” or “hour.”

Examples

  • It’s been a year since I’ve eaten ice cream.
  • For a year, you’ll have to stop eating ice cream.
  • It took a year to not want to eat ice cream.

StofelaEnglish - awhile v. a while (2)

Awhile

“Awhile” means the same thing as “a while” – for a time, but it is not a noun. “Awhile” is an adverb, meaning that it is used to describe other words (describe verbs, adjectives, etc). Remember that “awhile” can’t follow a preposition. And you can replace “awhile” with another adverb.

Examples

  • Rest awhile before eating ice cream.
  • Awhile later, I started eating ice cream again.
  • Can you play awhile before eating more ice cream?

If you’re ever confused, use “awhile” if you can replace it with another adverb.

Examples

  • Rest quickly before eating ice cream.
  • Can you play quickly before eating more ice cream?

 

StofelaEnglish - awhile v. a while (3)

A While v. Awhile

A while = noun, for a period of time

Awhile = adverb, for a time

StofelaEnglish - awhile v. a while (4)

What helps you remember the difference between these two confusing words? Let me know in the comments!

StofelaEnglish Signature

3 Irregular Plurals

Normally, if you want to talk about more than one item of a certain object, you make it plural. Usually in English, if you make a word plural, you add an “s” to the end. There are certain rules for making words plural in English and you should know all of those.

But there is the occasional exception to the rules. These exceptions are irregular plurals.

Irregular Plurals = words that change the spelling of the entire word when made plural

Irregular plurals have no easy pattern or rule, such as adding “s” to the end. For irregular plurals, you’ll have to memorize each one of the words, both the singular and the plural. Today, though, let’s start with only three irregular plurals. All three of these follow a similar pattern.

  • Pattern: *oo* -> *ee*

According to the pattern, if there are two “o” letters in the middle of the word, then to make it plural you change both of the “o” letters to be “e” letters.

There are a couple exceptions to this pattern, such as the word “boot” made plural is NOT “beet” but rather follows the normal plural rule and becomes “boots”. You can trust that these three words follow the “oo” to “ee” pattern.

Foot -> Feet

To make the word “foot” plural, change the two letters in the middle from “o” to “e”. More than one foot is called feet.

Examples

  • My foot hurts.
  • My feet are small.
  • Your feet are red.
  • Can you massage my foot?

Notice that there is no “s” at the end of “feet”. Even though there isn’t a “s” at the end, everyone knows that the word “feet” is plural and means that there is more than one.

Wrong Examples

  • My foots are small.
  • Your foots are red.

Goose -> Geese

To make the word “goose” plural, change the two letters in the middle from “o” to “e”. More than one goose is called geese.

Examples

  • Do you see the goose over there?
  • The geese fly in the sky in the shape of a v.
  • Can I have a pet goose?
  • The two geese talk to each other.

Wrong Examples

  • The gooses fly in the sky in the shape of a v.
  • The two gooses talk to each other.

Tooth -> Teeth

To make the word “tooth” plural, change the two letters in the middle from “o” to “e”. More than one tooth is called teeth.

Examples

  • My tooth is loose.
  • Your teeth are very white.
  • Do you see the shark’s tooth?
  • The animal’s teeth are very big!

Wrong Examples

  • Your tooths are very white.
  • The animal’s tooths are very big!

Learning the plural forms of these words is like learning a new word. Just learn it and remember it.

What other irregular plurals do you know? Let me know in the comments!

StofelaEnglish Signature

In v. At v. On Explained

One of the most confusing parts of English is the difference between three prepositions: at, in, and on. In other languages, these three words translate to the same word (one word) in another language. When trying to form sentences in English, this difficulty can make it frustrating to know which word to use.

If you learn the patterns for each of the three prepositions, then you’ll be better prepared to know which one to use in which situation.

At

Location

Use the preposition “at” to specify a location or place.

  • We can meet at the library.
  • I like to eat lunch at Chick-fil-a.
  • Can you stop at the next corner?

Certain time

Use the preposition “at” to specify a certain time.

  • We can meet at 3:00pm.
  • I like to eat lunch at noon.
  • Can you stop at 2:00pm?

StofelaEnglish - inaton (2)

In

Inside something

Use the preposition “in” to show the location inside something else.

  • The key is in the box.
  • Put the milk in the fridge.

Location

Use the preposition “in” to show location or place, when you’re already at the location.

  • I am in my house.
  • We’re in the produce section of the grocery store.

Month

Use the preposition “in” to indicate which month the event will happen.

  • In July we go to the beach.
  • Can we stop teaching in December?

Year

Use the preposition “in” to indicate in which year the event will happen.

  • In 2005 we went to the beach.
  • Can I stop working in 2020?

Time of day

Use the preposition “in” to indicate in which time of the day the event will happen.

  • In the morning I study.
  • They like to run in the afternoon.

Shape / color / size

Use the preposition “in” to indicate a shape/color/size of an object.

  • Can you buy the paint in blue?
  • The boy walks in a circle.

StofelaEnglish - inaton (1)

On

Surface location

Use the preposition “on” to show the location when on a surface or flat area.

  • Put the book on the table.
  • We can lay down on the grass.

Days of the week

Use the preposition “on” to indicate the day of the week.

  • We go to the doctor on Friday.
  • I was born on a Monday.

Dates

Use the preposition “on” to indicate a certain date.

  • We go to the doctor on May 22nd.
  • I was born on January 1st.

Part of body

Use the preposition “on” to indicate the location of a part of the body.

  • She hit me on my leg.
  • The bee lands on my arm.

StofelaEnglish - inaton (3)

Knowing which preposition to use can be really confusing but the more that you practice, the easier that it will become.

Practice more the differences between “at”, “in”, and “on” with the At/In/On Worksheet and leave your answers in the comments!

StofelaEnglish Signature