Significant details of conjunction

ConjunctionsConjunction is one of the parts of speech. The primary function of conjunction is to hook up. In simpler form, conjunction is a word which joins two words, sentences, clauses & phrases with each other.

The words like for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so, since, before, until, than, though etc. are conjunctions. Some sentences using conjunctions are given below.

  1. My mother and I went to the market.

  2. Sumit is good in acting but Karan is best.

  3. Think before you speak.

  4. I ate out yesterday with my family.

The conjunctions can be categorized in three categories:

1) Coordinating Conjunctions: These conjunctions join two statements of equal importance.

The seven common coordinating conjunctions are: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so and can be memorised in their abbreviated form as F.A.N.B.O.Y.S (for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so). Some sentences using coordinating conjunctions are given below.

  • Dyna likes tea, but Joe likes coffee.

  • This is the worst dish I have ever had, so I will never eat it again.

  • She didn’t like the food, yet she ate it.

  • They don’t have food, nor do they have money to buy it.

2) Subordinating Conjunctions: These conjunctions join two sentences, one of which depends on other for its complete meaning. They are helpful in writing paragraphs.

The most common examples of subordinating conjunctions are although, as, because, before, if, since, so, so that, than, though, unless, until, when, whenever, whereas, while etc.

Some sentences using subordinating conjunctions are given below.

  • I painted the house because the walls were all stained.

  • Once you’ve learnt the conjunctions, it’s very easy to use them

  • It snowed while I was in Paris.

  • Since then, I have changed my opinion about him.

  • I won’t sleep unless you come back.

3) Correlative Conjunctions: These are the pair of conjunctions used to join two syntactic equivalent statements, to complete their meanings.

The examples of correlative conjunctions are mentioned below.

  • either , or

Thomas will either come on Saturday or Sunday.

  • neither, nor

Neither Alice nor Joe knows when aunt Leena left.

  • whether, or

They were not sure whether to go out or stay at home on weekend.

  • not only, but

It was extreme cold not only in Delhi but in entire northern states of India.

  • just as, so

Just as many Americans love football, Indians love cricket.

  • both, and

Both Andrew and Liza love their pets.

The use of conjunctions has made English simple as they shorten the sentences. If we do not use conjunction then the conversation or writing will become lengthy. Just remove the conjunctions from the above stated sentences and speak them. See how cumbersome it becomes making sentences without any conjunction. Thus it can be said that in English grammar, conjunctions are an integral part of speech.

To learn more on Conjunctions visit our website – http://www.englishleap.com/grammar/conjunctions

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How to speak English fluently

English is the only language for communication across the world. It is the common links between people of different countries. So it has become obligatory to learn English especially for non-English speakers. We learn English since childhood but only as one of the subjects. So we learn it just for the sake of passing its exam. We learn grammar since childhood but we aren’t able to use it correctly to make sentences. In today’s cutthroat competition there is a huge demand of speaking English fluently. It is also required to groom yourself both at the personal as well as professional front.learn to speak fluent english

Speaking English fluently does not mean being able to speak English fast. Communication is the ability to understand what the other person is saying and be able to effectively put your point of view to the other person. It is important to speak correctly and coherently. Hence, it is imperative to have a strong grounding in grammar fundamentals. Most English coaching institutes downplay the role of grammar. They preach a communicative approach which stresses talking in English straight away and listening to other people talk in English. It is said that this approach is how a child learns any language and therefore, this is the most effective way to learn English. However, there are a couple of important points that are forgotten. It takes a child many years to become fluent in any language. An adult learner does not want to spend five to seven years mastering a language. Hence, a more structured program is required for adult learners.

There are three important elements while learning English. First, it is a strong base of English grammar. There are plenty of books and other online material available for mastering the concepts of grammar. Some websites also have systematic and step-by-step courses for grammar improvement. They judge the grammar knowledge of a learner initially through an assessment. The assessment comprises of some questions based on English grammar. After taking the assessment, a score card is generated for the learner which highlights the weaker concepts. This way, learners know about the grammar concepts which need attention. They can work upon later read about the other concepts.

Second essential element for fluency in English is the richness of vocabulary. It is a good measure to estimate how comfortable the learner is with the English language. Thus an English speaker should know at least 4000 to 5000 words. It’s not at all difficult. Just learn 5 new words daily and use them in your conversation. Gradually, you will become habitual of using them.

Thirdly and arguably most importantly, spoken English practise is paramount to become a fluent English speaker. The reason why many learners are not able to speak English fluently is that they do not get the company to practise English with. You can seek the help of social media for it. Make some native English speakers your pen pals and talk to them regularly. Tell them that you want to practice speaking English with them and also ask them to point out your mistakes. Focus on the corrections they make and memorize it so you don’t make the same mistake again.

Speaking English fluently should not be an elusive goal. Most people are able to significantly improve their fluency in English in a matter of three to six months. It is a goal which is easily achievable if a structured and step-by-step approach is taken.

To know more on how to speak fluent English, visit our website – http://www.englishleap.com/other-resources/spoken-english-tips

Nouns

In simple words, noun is the name of a person, place or thing. This is the simplest form of definition of noun and in order to understand it better, some examples of nouns are: Anita, Amy, New York, Waiter, Apple, Mango, City, Roger and so on.

noun

There are many classifications of nouns and most of these classifications are based on the usage of the nouns. Two major classes of nouns are:

Collective nouns: These nouns are those which are used to identify a group of nouns as one entity. Some examples of collective nouns are:

A crew of sailors.
A group of dancers.
A class of students.
A herd of sheep.
A haul of fish.
A flock of birds.

Such examples can be seen in abundant quantity and these nouns have made it easier to identify the nouns as one.

Possessive noun: These are those nouns which are used to show possession. They signify ownership, and are used to show that a commodity belongs to something or someone.

Few examples of possessive noun are:
Wordsworth’s works.
Robin’s cat.
Students’ report cards.

All of the above sentences signify ownership and show that the objects defined belong to some specific persons.

Other than this classification, nouns have another classification which is based on its usage. According to this classification, the noun is of the following types:

– Proper Nouns: Proper nouns are those nouns which signify the name of a specific place, thing or a person. These names can be the names of communities, places, religions, organizations, days, months and so on.These are always used with a capital letter at the start as they’re required to be shown distinct from other nouns. For example:

The Bible is the holy book of the Christians.
I am going to New Delhi tomorrow.
Shahrukh Khan is a wonderful actor.

In these examples, the words marked in bold indicate some specific person, place, religion or a book and thus, these nouns are known as proper nouns.

– Abstract Nouns: These are those nouns which are used to express thoughts and to signify things which cannot be perceived through the five senses of humans. The following examples will help you understand these nouns better:

He was delighted to see his son win the award.
The bravery of the young girl won her the civilian bravery award.
She was bound by the shackles of debt.

In the given examples, the word delighted is used to signify a state of mind, bravery is the motivation behind the actions and bound refers to a state of being.

– Common Nouns: This category of the noun is the one which refers to common things. In simple words, these nouns denote a generalized niche of places, people or objects. For example:

The girls were at the party.
New neighbors have arrived.
There is a phone ringing.

In all these examples, the bold words indicate a common group and thus, these words come under the category of common nouns.

Apart from these, there are two more categories, namely countable and uncountable nouns which take into account those words, which are countable and uncountable respectively.

To learn more about Noun visit our website – http://www.englishleap.com/grammar/nouns

How to avoid common mistakes in English

Every language has some confusing concepts so does English. There are words that sound the same, some unusual spellings and complicated grammatical construction which often puzzle a learner even a native English speaker. The best way to fix these mistakes is to identify the commonly confusing areas and study about them carefully or seek someone’s help in understanding them. Slowly and steadily you will get rid of your mistakes.

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The most common errors in English are mentioned below along with the rules to fix them.  You can memorize these rules and avoid making mistakes in your communication.

1) Usage of articles – A/ An:  Many of us get confused with the usage of articles – ‘A’ and ‘An’. We have learnt in schools that article ‘A’ is used before the consonants and ‘An’ is used before the vowels. Then why do we say ‘an hour’ or ‘a university’?

Rule: The rule for using articles says – Use article ‘A’ before the words starting with a consonant sound and ‘An’ before the words starting with a vowel sound.

Thus we always put ‘an’ before hour as it is pronounced like the word ‘our’ and ‘a’ before university as it is pronounced like ‘yooniversity’. Similarly we put ‘an’ before X-ray, MLA, honour etc.

2) Making plurals – The general rule for making plurals is to add the alphabet  ‘s’ after the word. This rule doesn’t hold well for the words ending in a consonant + Y and the words ending with O, -CH, -SH, -SS, -X, or -Z. 

For words ending with -O, -CH, -SH, -SS, -X, or -Z we add ‘es’ to make plurals. We drop ‘y’ and add ‘ies’ to make plural for the words ending with a consonant and alphabet ‘y’ we drop y and add ‘ies’ to make plural.

3) Capitalization:  This is the most common mistakes people make. Remember to always capitalize the proper noun which includes holidays, days of the week, places, and names.

4) Making participle: Most of the verbs do not change their spellings when they are changed to participles. For instance the past particle of put, shut and cut is put, shut and cut respectively.

5) Learn the difference between the most commonly misused words like

  • I and me
  • Your and you’re
  • Its and It’s
  • There, Their and They’re
  • Accept and Except etc.

6) Learn about using the apostrophe. Apostrophe is used to show possession like Mary’s, John’s etc.  and for contraction like It’s , you’re, they’re etc.  To show possession of a word ending with ‘s’ like Paras,  etc. we simply add apostrophe at the end of the word. The possession of Paras can be written as Paras’.

You can seek help of your English teacher, grammar books or a grammar whiz who can point out your mistakes and correct them. Alternatively, you can also look for them over the internet or find some good grammar book which can teach you about commonly made mistakes and the ways how to avoid them. With your diligence you can be a pro in this global language for communication.

For more information, please visit our website – http://www.englishleap.com/common-mistakes

Verbs and its types

Verbs are words that express an action or a state of being. They are an essential part to complete a sentence.

The verbs can be categorized as –

  • Action Verbs
  • Helping verbs  or Auxiliary  verbs
  • Linking Verbs

A brief description of all these subtypes is give below.

Action verbs

These are the words which express some action or possession.

For Example: run, walk, give, take, eat and sleep etc. express action while have, own, etc. express possession.

The action verbs are further sub- categorized in two categories.

Transitive verbs

A verb which is always followed by a noun that receives its action is called as Transitive Vers. This noun is called the direct object.

Example:

He raised his hand when the teacher asked question.

(The verb is raised. Her hand is an object receiving the verb’s action. Therefore, raised is a transitive verb)

Some more examples are –

  • He pulled the chair.
  • She rode the car.
  • I have made these cookies
  • He caught the school bus.

Transitive verbs sometimes have indirect objects, which name the object to whom or for whom the action was done.

Example:  He gave Rosy his books.

(The verb is ‘gave’. The direct object is the books. [What did he give? the books]. The indirect object is Rosy. (To whom he gave the books)

Intransitive verbs

A verb which has a direct or an indirect object. It may be followed by an adverb or adverbial phrase.

For Example:

  • He walked out slowly from his room.

(Here the verb is walk. The words slowly from his room modify the verb. But there is no object that receives the action.)

Some more examples are –

  • The baby cried.
  • She told a joke.
  • They laughed.

Linking verbs:

A linking verb is a verb which connects the subject of a sentence to a noun or adjective that describes it. The most common linking verbs are ‘to be verbs’.  They don’t express any action.

  • John is a cricket fan.
  • The cake smells divine.
  • He is the President.
  • You seem nervous.

Helping verbs or Auxiliary Verbs

These are the verbs which always need a main verb to follow.  They convey additional information regarding aspects of possibility (can, could, etc.)

Examples:

  • He can’t play well.
  • Could I get a glass of water?
  • I don’t have a car.
  • I shall go now.
  • Who had won the election?

The form of the verb remains same in Simple present tense and simple future tense whereas it changes in simple past tense.

In simple past tense, verbs are categorized in two categories:

Regular Verbs

Irregular Verbs

Their brief description is given below:

Regular Verbs: These are the verbs which can be converted to their past form by adding “d” or “ed” at their end.

Examples:  Walk, Talk, Play, enjoy. Their past form is walked, talked, played and enjoyed respectively.

Irregular Verbs: These are the verbs which cannot be converted to their past form by adding “ed” or “d” at their end.

Examples:  see, eat, run, write etc. Their past form is saw, ate, ran and wrote respectively.

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