Are you confused by prepositions in English?
Do you forget if you need to say, “at work” or “in work”, “on Sunday” or “in Sunday”?
You are not alone!
Many people have problems with prepositions in English. Prepositions are small words with a big meaning! There are more than 150 prepositions in English! Wikipedia lists 521! That’s a lot! This link gives you access to a free eBook from EnglishClub with a full list and examples of prepositions. It’s 56 pages long, so I don’t recommend that you print it, but you can use it as an online resource.
The good news is, it’s not necessary to memorize the entire list. But, you should study as many as you can. Today we’ll look at some of them and how to use them.
What’s a preposition?
A preposition is a word that shows when, where, or how something was done.
- I have class on Mondays.
- The boy jumped into the lake.
- Sarah opened the lock with a key.
How do I use prepositions?
The word “preposition” means “pre- position.” Therefore, they go in front of another word, usually a noun.
Prepositions of Place
These prepositions show where things are.
In this picture, the bowls are beside (next to) the glasses. They are above the plates and the cups. The plates and cups are under the bowls and glasses. The plates are between the glasses and the cups. One bowl is inside another bowl. All of the dishes are inside the cabinet.
Prepositions of Time
These prepositions tell when you do something. In, On, and At are the three most common prepositions.
|In||general month, year, time of day, general time||in January, in 2012, in the morning, in the future|
|On||day, date||on Christmas Day, on July 14th, on Saturday|
|At||specific time, *night||at 7:00 at night|
Prepositions of Agent
These prepositions show how something is done.
- The glass is filled with water.
- The book was written by Cervantes.
For some practice, try any of these exercises:
(More difficult) https://www.ego4u.com/en/cram-up/grammar/prepositions/exercises
(Even more difficult!) https://www.ego4u.com/en/cram-up/grammar/prepositions/exercises?14