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English Grammar Module . For English Camp (modest user group). Article. 2 categories of article Indefinite article; a , an Definite article; the. Indefinite Article - a, an For a single thing that can be counted a girl, a tiger, an airport

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English grammar module

English Grammar Module

For English Camp

(modest user group)


  • 2 categories of article

    • Indefinite article; a, an

    • Definite article; the

  • Indefinite Article - a, an

    • For a single thing that can be counted

      • a girl,

      • a tiger,

      • an airport

    • We call these singular countable nouns.

    • Do not use a or an

      • before a plural name

      • Before the name of a thing that cannot be counted.

  • Do not use an before a word that a vowel that make ‘you’ sound. Use a instead.

    • A European

    • A university

  • Use an before a word that begin with

    • a vowel sound by letters a, e, i ,o, u

    • a silent h

      • An hour

      • An honour

      • An honest boy

    • Letters spoken with a vowel sound

      • An ‘A’ for English exam

      • An SMS from a friend

  • Use a before

    • the common name that we give to people, animals, places and things

      • A schoolboy

      • A bicycle

  • Use a or an

    • Before a word that describes a single person or thing.

    • Before the name of occupation

    • When mention a person or thing for the first time

    • To show which country a person comes from.

    • When counting or measuring thing

      • The fish costs RM40 a kilo.

  • Definite article – The

    • Use the

      • Before the name that can be counted.

      • Before the name that cannot be counted.

      • When people already know exactly which person or thing you are talking about.

      • When you refer to something for a second time.

      • With groups that represent the whole class of people or thing.

      • For familiar things or because it is only one of its kind.

      • Before ordinals

      • Before superlatives

  • Do not use a, an or the before

    • the people’s names and titles.

    • the name of most roads, villages, towns, cities, states and countries.

    • the names of holidays, festivals and events that are celebrated yearly when we refer them in general.

    • the names of nationalities and languages when we talk about them in general.

    • names of meals or food when referring in general

    • general names of sports or leisure activities

  • The names of colours when you speak in general

  • The names of days or months of the year or seasons, in general sense

  • Abstract noun that are used in a general sense

  • The name of diseases or illnesses.

  • Do not use a, an, the after

    • The word both and all

    • The words like kind of, type of, species of, variety of etc…

  • Nouns

    • We use a noun

      • to name a person, animal, place or thing.

      • to name an quality or an emotion.

    • Type of nouns

      • Common

      • Proper

      • Abstract

      • Collective

      • Compound

    • Common nouns

      • The general name that we give to people and things

      • Do not start with capital letters unless at the beginning of sentences

      • Can take a plural form.

      • Example

        • Intelligent boy

        • Elephants at the zoo.

    • Proper nouns

      • The name of specific person or thing

      • Example

        • Jenny Lim

        • Singapore

        • Kitty the cat

      • Begin with capital letters no matter where it occurs in a sentence.

    • Collective nouns

      • Name of the group or collection of similar thing or people.

      • People

        • A troop of soldier

        • A crew of sailor

        • A band of musician

        • A field of runner

        • A panel of judges

        • A gang of thieves

        • A staff of teachers

        • A tribe of natives

        • A troupe of dancers

        • A choir of singers

    • Animals

      • A brood of chickens

      • A pack of wolves

      • A flock of birds/sheep

      • A pride of lions

      • A gaggle of geese

      • A school/shoal of fish

      • A herd of cattle

      • A swarm of bees

      • A litter of kittens

      • A team of oxen

    • Thing

      • A bale of cotton

      • A clutch of eggs

      • A batch of bread

      • A clump of trees

      • A bouquet of roses

      • A fleet of ships

      • A chest of drawers

      • A deck of cards

      • A galaxy of stars

      • A string of pearls

    • Abstract noun

      • Refers to things such as concepts, qualities or ideas

      • Not solid thing that we can count or touch.

      • Things that we can think about or feel

      • Example

        • Love

        • Kindness

        • Health

    • Compound nouns

      • Is a noun that is made up of two or more words

      • Example

      • Basketball (basket + ball)

      • Walking stick (walking + stick)

      • Mother-in-law (mother + in + law)

    • Countable nouns

      • Nouns that can be counted

      • Have both singular and plural form

      • Use a or an with singular countable noun.

      • Use a few, several, many, a lot of, plenty of, a number of and numerals to count plural nouns.

    • Spelling rule for plural countable nouns

      • Add suffix –s to make a noun plural

        • Clown => Clowns

        • School=> Schools

      • Add suffix –es to a noun that ends in –s, -ss, -sh, -ch, –x and –o to make it plural

        • Bus => Buses

        • Bush => Bushes

        • Witch => Witches

        • Box => Boxes

        • Potato => Potatoes

    • Add suffix –ies to a noun that ends in a consonant –y to make it plural

      • Baby => babies

      • Spy => Spies

      • Lorry => Lorries

    • Add suffix –ves to some nouns that end in –f or –fe to make them plural. However, the –f or –fe has to be dropped.

      • Wolf => Wolves

      • Knife => Knives

    • For irregular noun,

      • Change the vowel sound of a singular noun to make it plural

        • Tooth => Teeth

        • Man => Men

        • Woman => Women

        • Mouse => Mice

        • Louse => Lice

      • Add the suffix –en to make a noun to make it plural

        • Child => children

        • Ox => Oxen

    • Uncountable noun

      • Some nouns cannot be counted.

      • Example;

        • Liquid-like things such as oil, water.

        • Very tiny things such as sugar, flour.

    • Quantifiers such as some, any, no, much, a little, a lot of etc. to measure the uncountable nouns.


    • A pronoun is a word that is used to replace a noun word or a noun phrase.

    • It is to avoid repeating same noun many times.

    • Example of phrase without pronoun

      • Salleh and Laila live in Arau. Salleh and Laila are teachers. Salleh teaches English but Salleh does not teach Mathematics. Laila teach Mathematics but Laila does not teach English.

    • Personal pronoun

      • To refer to people.

      • Personal pronoun can be in the first person, second person and third person such as in table below.

      • Use first person pronounto talk about yourself.

      • Use second person pronoun to speak to somebody else.

    • Use third person pronouns to speak of other people.

      • Use she or her for female

      • Use he or him for male

      • Use it for animal or thing

      • Use they or them for plural male, female, animal or thing.

    • Possessive pronoun

      • To show ownership

      • Use possessive pronoun without a noun.

      • Example : This is mine iPad.

      • A possessive pronoun tells us whether the owner is single person or many people.

    • Demonstrative pronouns

      • To say whether the person or thing we are talking about is near us or not so near.

      • The demonstrative pronoun are as in the table below

    • Reflexive pronouns

      • To show that the subject and the object in a sentence are the same person or thing.

      • Help us make it clear that the doer and the receiver of the action is the same person or thing.

      • Example : Ratchel bought herself a new skirt.

      • Use reflexive pronoun to emphasis by replacing immediately after the pronoun or noun phrase. This will tell us clearly that the subject did without any help.

      • Use by + reflexive pronoun to emphasize the meaning ‘alone’.


    • A word that gives us information about a noun.

    • Adjective do not have tenses and do not need to agree with the subject in person and number.

    • We usually put an adjective before the noun it describe or modifies. we can also put it after the noun.

    • Adjectives of quality

      • To describe noun that give opinion, size, condition, age and colour.

      • Can be used with adverb of degree like absolutely, very, rather, fairly and a little and these adjective also have comparative and superlative forms.

      • Here are some common adjective of quality.

    • Classifying adjective

      • Describe the shape, origin, material, location and purpose of noun.

      • Cannot be graded by using adverb of degree and they do not have comparative and superlative form.

    • Order of adjective

      • When we use two or more adjective before a noun in a sentence, we should place then in a particular order.

      • Given below is a suggested pattern of how this can be done.


    • A linking or a joining word

    • To connect words and sentences.


    • English verb can be made up of a verb and another verb.

    • Verb that combine with prepositions are called as prepositional verb whereas those that combine with adverb are called as phrasalverb.

    • Prepositional verb

      • In this combination, the preposition has an object.

      • Example

        • The cat jumped off the table.

        • My parents are looking at my report card.

    • Phrasal verb

      • When the phrasal verb has an object, the adverb can be put before or after it.

      • If the object is a pronoun or functions like one, then the adverb must be put after the pronoun.

    Wh questions
    Wh- questions

    • Wh- questions is purposely to ask a question

      • What => to ask about people and things

        • What is that boy’s name?

        • What did you do yesterday?

      • Who and Whom => to ask about people or to identify them.

        • Who is that woman?

        • To whom did you give it?

    • Where => to ask about a place or position of something

      • Where do you live?

      • Where are all the boys?

    • Which => to ask about a choice

      • Which drink do you like best?

    • Why => to ask about reason

      • Why were they late?

    • When => to ask about time

      • When will he arrive?

    • Whose => to ask about who is the owner

      • Whose pen is this?

    Question tags
    Question Tags the condition

    • Usually a short question added to the end of a statement

    • Made up of an auxiliary verb or a modal verb and a pronoun as the subject.

    • Usually contract or shorten the negative form of the verb in a question tag.

    • Use a question tag to find out if something is true the condition

      • He is our fastest runner, isn’t he?

    • Use a question tag to get someone to agree with you on something.

      • The curry was hot, wasn’t it?

    • If the statement has a word like is, are, was, were, has, have, had, do, does, did, can, could, would, must, repeat that word in the question tag.

      • They are helpful, aren’t they?

    • Use the conditiondoesn’t, don’t or didn’t in question tag if the statement does not contain an auxiliary verb.

      • Your mother cooks a lot of vegetables, doesn’t she?

    • Use question tags after the statement, not after the question.

    Simple present tense
    Simple Present Tense the condition

    • Present tense connects the time of an action or a state of being to the present moment in time.

    • Simple Present Tense talks about

      • A routine, that is repeating action again and again.

        • I wash my hair every day.

    • Something that always true.

      • We havetwo hands.

    • Add the condition–s, -esor –iesto the end of the verb in the simple present tense if the subject is in the 3rd person singular.

    Present continuous tense
    Present Continuous Tense the condition

    • Also known as present progressive tense

    • To show action in progress or continuous action

    • The action is temporary in the time of speaking

      • Be(is, am, are) + noun + ing

      • Example; I am looking my sister

    • Some basic rule to follow the condition

      • Rule 1: If the verb ends with –e, drop the –e and add –ing. Example;

        • Dance => dancing

      • Rule 2: If the verb ends in a consonant and has a vowel before it, double the consonant and add –ing. Example;

        • Grab => grabbing

      • Rule 3: If the verb ends in a vowel +y, just add –ing. Example;

        • Say =>saying

    • Rule 4: Some verb that ends with a the conditionc have k + ingadded to them. Example;

      • Panic =>Panicking

    • Rule 5: In single syllable verb where there is a consonant-vowel-consonant combination, double the final consonant and add –ing. This rule does not apply to words ending with –w, -x or –y.

    Simple past tense
    Simple Past Tense the condition

    • The past tense shows us what happened in the past.

    • The action is completely finished before the time of speaking.

    • Most verb form the simple past tense with –ed. Words like these are called regular verb.

      • We walked up that hill last Saturday.

    Past continuous tense
    Past Continuous Tense the simple past tense of regular verb.

    • Past continuous tense is used to talk about an action or an event which was going on at particular time at the past.

    • The action started before that particular time and most likely went on for a short while after that

      • Example; It was raining heavily during recess time.

    • Use past continuous tense the simple past tense of regular verb.

      • To talk about an action that was going on over a longer period or over a whole period of time.

      • To talk about an action that was happening but was interrupted by another action.

        • Tasha was frying an egg when she heard a knock on the door.

      • To talk about two actions that were going on at the same time

        • Diana was blowing up the balloons while Martin was tying them up.

    • Use not with the past continuous tense to turn it into the negative.

      • I was not talking to you.

      • My parents were not feeling well all last week.

    • Some verbs are not usually used in past continuous tense such as recognise, own, forget and fear.

      • But, in informal speech we normally break this rules

    Simple future tense
    Simple Future Tense negative.

    • Future Tense is used to tell us that the action describe by the verb will take place at some point in the time to come.

      • Use will to talk about things that will probably or certainly happen in the future; that we cannot control.

        • She will be 12 years old tomorrow.

      • Use shall

        • In the first person singular and plural.

        • To ask questions

    • Use negative.will/shall to

      • Make offers, requests, suggestions and to give orders.

        • Shall we cook dinner for you tonight?

        • Will you turn off the tap, please?

      • Express willingness and decisions.

        • We will repair the door for you.

      • Make promise and to give warnings.

        • Leave now or I will call police.

      • Make prediction

        • It will rain tonight.

    Preposition negative.

    • Words like on, in, under, of, by and for are called preposition.

    • Usually comes before a noun.

    • Preposition is used

      • To show location, direction, movement and time.

    • Preposition can a single word or more.

    • Prepositional phrase negative.

      • Made up of a preposition and the word(s) that follow it.

      • A preposition can be followed by a noun phrase, a pronoun or a gerund.

      • Example

        • We found a cat sleeping on our new car this morning.

        • There is a rat behind the cupboard.

        • This rose is for you.

    • Preposition of place negative.

      • Tell us where someone or something is

      • Usually put them after the verb and before the noun phrase in a sentence.

    • Preposition of movement

      • Tells us about change of place or position

      • Always follow a verb

    • Preposition of time

      • Tells us when something is happen