tell what the subject of a sentence is doing. .
-verbs that express a physical action: lift, hit, swallow
- verbs that do not express an action. They tell about a state of being: is, be, are, seems, was,looked, tasted, felt, appeared, became. Here are some examples. She
a fine lady. He
cute. The food
funny. But if I say: I
the food-guess what-
is now an action verb. (Boy do I hate all theserules and exceptions to the rules!)
Helping verbs -
are just that-they help out the main verb. (has, have, will) We
here before. By theway
is called a
(any time you have more than one verb, it’s called a
.Often you will be asked to read a passage and locate the sentence with the error. What is wrong in this sentence?The boys is going to the park. (The subject is plural and needs the plural form of the verb
, which is
Neither of the athletes (practices, practice) after dinner. The correct choice is practice. It seems like it would be just theopposite. The plural form of a word ends with an “s”, so why isn’t the correct verb choice the one that ends with an“s”? That’s our English language-maddening. Try a few more. (Has, Have) you seen that new movie with Denzel?(Have) The instructors (teaches, teach) the importance of friendship.Verbs can have
forms: present, past and past participle
Regular verbs are easy:
Help (present), helped (past- just added –ed), have helped (past participle)
Irregular verbs are tricky:
begin (present), began (past), have begun(past participle) hit (present), hit (past-stayed the same), have hit (past participle) or swim (present) swam (past),have swum (past participle)
I (play, played) on the field yesterday. Why is played the correct form? (Because youdid the action in the past.) I (cut, cutted, have cutted) my finger yesterday. Cut is always the correct form, because itis one of those irregular fellows.Verbs also have
This shows the time of an action or the time of the state of being:
(shall play, will play).
are words that take the place of nouns.
I, she, it, you, we, they, me, us, him, her, them-- Could you use them correctly in a sentence?(He, Him) and I went to the movies. “He” is the correct choice because it is the
of this personal pronoun. What about this sentence? He went with (I, me) to the store. “Me” is the right choice because it is the
of this personal pronoun.
his, her, our, their, your, its, whose, mine (notice that “its” has no apostrophe)
-these, those, this, that
anybody, some, everybody, each, all, somebody
of us are going to the pep rally. (indefinite)
candy (some now becomes an adjective, because it tells how much). You see how tricky the parts of speech can be. It just depends on
they are beingused in the sentence.
-who, what, whose, whom, whichDid you notice that
can also a possessive pronoun? Again,
the word’s function
in the sentence determines its part of speech.Whose is this? (interrogative pronoun)Whose car is this? (possessive pronoun)
are words that describe or modify NOUNS or PRONOUNS.
Can tell what kind-blue, silly, stupid, crazy
Can tell how many-one, ten, some, each
piece of candy was delicious. (adjective describing the noun,
of us went. (indefinite pronoun, which is the subject for this sentence)
Can tell which one-this, that that, these, those-Wait a minute these can also be pronouns. You’re not crazy; it just depends on
they are being used.
book is mine. (adjective, because it describes which book)
ismine. (pronoun-functions as subject of sentence)
Articles-the, a, anA
is a word that connects words or groups of words.
Coordinating conjunctions -
(just think about how you coordinate your clothing) connect things that arerelated. The most common ones are
and, but, or
*Correlative conjunctions -
are conjunctions used in pairs. The most common ones areEither…ornot only…but alsoboth…and Neither…norwhether….or 2