remembering prepositions, spelling and punctuation


In our second class day we had done some exercises to refresh some grammar concepts that are important in the writing skills. The first exercise was about spelling:

A Everyone makes spelling mistakes some of the time. But many spelling mistakes can often be avoided by checking your work carefully before you hand it in. There are 16 mistakes in these students’ sentences. __Underline__ the errors and correct them.

1 Please let me know your __adress__. (address)

2 My brother is __ninteen__ years old. (nineteen)

3 One day he’s __hopping__ to go to __Amerika__. (hoping, America)

4 It was a __realy__ __wonderfull__ meal! (really, wonderful)

5 I __recieved__ __you__ letter this morning. (received, your)

6 He __want__ to improve his __knoledge__ of __english__. (wants, knowledge, English)

7 Concorde __flys__ across the Atlantic in four __ours__. (flies, hours)

8 Some people find __speling__ __especialy__ __dificult__. (spelling, especially, difficult)

Some comments on the spelling mistakes we have detected and corrected. The number nine looses its ‘e’ if we form its ordinal form ninth. The double ‘p’ mistake in hopping has its roots in the verb to hope which is inflected as hoping. It isn’t an intrinsic mistake because the inflected form hopping is correct with the verb to hop, which has the following meaning (merriam webster dictionary):

Main Entry: hop
Pronunciation: \ˈhäp\
Function: verb
Inflected Form(s): hopped; hop·ping
Etymology: Middle English hoppen, from Old English hoppian
Date: before 12th century

intransitive verb

1: to move by a quick springy leap or in a series of leaps; also: to move as if by hopping [hop in the car]

2: to make a quick trip especially by air

3: to set about doing something —usually used in the phrase hop to it

transitive verb

1: to jump over [hop a fence]

2: to ride on [hopped a flight]; also: to ride surreptitiously and without authorization [hop a freight train]

Most spelling errors can be avoided if you use a dictionary to look up any words you’re unsure of –and if you check your written work through carefully. Many spelling mistakes are slips of the pen.

The following exercise is about punctuation:

B (1) Another problem is punctuation, but probably only a few punctuation marks are used differently in English and your language. Take it in urns to say these punctuation marks aloud:

! (exclamation mark)
? (question mark)
. (dot/stop)
, (comma)
; (semicolon)
: (colon)
(apostrophe)
(inverted commas/quotation marks)
“” (double quotation marks)
(hyphen)
(dash)
() (brackets)

(2) Here are some examples of students’ work. Find and correct the punctuation mistakes.

Harrods is __Londons’__ (London’s) most famous department store. You can buy almost anything there and __its__ (it’s) one of the __landmark’s__ (landmarks) of __London?__ (London.) People come to eat at __it’s__ (its) restaurants and look round __its’__ (its) 214 departments (.) But not everyone comes to buy (;) many of the people who go there ust enjoy looking at the enormous range of goods on display — and at the other customers (.)

There is a third exercise left to homework.

This paragraph has no punctuation at all! Add the necessary punctuation.

Every Tuesday Friday and Saturday in our part of the city theres an open-air market in the main square which everyone goes to Farmers come in from the countryside to sell their fresh vegetables and fruit Other stalls sell all kinds of things cheese jeans fish and even second-hand furniture Its almost impossible to carry on a conversation above the noise and shouting as customers push their way to the front trying to attract the stall-holders attention and demanding the ripest freshest fruit or the lowest prices

Finally here it is the exercise for remembering prepositions. With prepositions, it isn’t usually the prepositions themselves that are difficult, it’s when to use them. This exercise tests your knowledge of the uses of some common prepositions.

A (1) Fill the gaps in the sentemces below with a suitable preposition from this list. Un some cases there may be more than one possible answer:

about – at – by – for – in – of – on – to – with

1 ‘A’ is …for… apple.

2 Chris is a very good friend …of… mine.

3 We both share a love …of/for… music. (I failed here)

4 It’s warm …for… the tome of year.

5 I’ve been waiting …for… an hour. (here you can do without preposition)

6 I’m looking for a book …about/on… animals.

7 Hamlet was written …by… Shakespeare.

8 She’s read all the works …of… Shakespeare.

9 He’s interested …in… sport and literature.

10 When does the train …to/for… London leave?

11 Part-time workers are paid …by… the hour.

12 How long has she been …in… hospital? (I failed here)

13 The shops are closed …on… Sundays.

14 The bill must be paid …on/by… Monday. (There is a difference between the propositions: ‘by’ has ‘approximate’ meaning, that is, could be before or after Monday)

15 He was wearing a coat …with… a torn sleeve.

16 I opened the can …with… a can-opener.

17 This pullover is a bargain …for/at… 13.99.

18 Liverpool won …by… three goals …to… nil.

19 Harrods is a famous store …in… London.

20 Ships are made …of/from… steel.

21 Cambridge is 100 km north …of… London.

22 My brother is very good …at… maths.

23 The total cost is …about… 100 pounds. (It can also do without preposition)

24 I bought it …for… 3 pounds in a second-hand shop.

3 comentarios en “remembering prepositions, spelling and punctuation

  1. The question that has remained in my mind after doing the first exercise is “When do we double the consonant when inflecting the verb?” I’ve found out a link from the British Council web section Learning English that explains this grammar subject.

    Come to think of it, I’ve found out a piece of paper with the questions we worked out in groups in class yesterday. This were the questions:

    – Do you know anyone with a strange or unusual hobby?

    – What’s the most enjoyable hobby you’ve ever tried?

    – Can you imagine any of your hobbies becoming so important that you earn your living from it?

    – Has there ever been a TV programme you enjoyed so much that you wanted to meet the stars, buy souvenirs, go to conventions, etc.?

    – Do you think there is any hobby or leisure activity that employers might not be impressed by when people apply for a job?

  2. This first activity we’ve done today in English classroom was to solve the exercise Gemma told us to do as homework on Tuesday. The exercise was about punctuation. Here it is (punctuation signs added in brackets):

    Every Tuesday[,] Friday and Saturday[,] in our part of the city[,] there[]s an open-air market in the main square[/nothing] which everyone goes to[.] Farmers come in from the countryside to sell their fresh vegetables and fruit[.] Other stalls sell all kinds of things[:] cheese[,] jeans[,] fish and even second-hand furniture[.] It[]s almost impossible to carry on a conversation above the noise and shouting as customers push their way to the front[,] trying to attract the stall-holders attention and demanding the ripest[,] freshest fruit or the lowest prices[.]

  3. Por si os interesa os dejo el link de una página que esta muy muy bien en lo que a aprender idiomas se refiere: http://www.babelyou.com
    Es una pagina donde se puede hablar con gente de muy distintos paises, compartiendo dudas idiomáticas, aficiones,…
    Está muy bien: util y divertida a la vez! Saludos.

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