How to Speak Proper English Grammar

If you want to speak unimpeded, then you need to learn the rules of proper English grammar. This can be a challenge since there are a lot of rules to work with. Not to worry, this article is a basic guide you need to learn how to speak proper English grammar.

How to Speak Proper English Grammar: 6 Effective Tips

To speak professionally, you must know and use proper grammar. The tips highlighted below will help you achieve this.

1. Use the active voice instead of the passive

Active voices describe actions taken by the subject. The active voice is more straightforward to understand to use than the passive. When using the active voice, the sentence follows; a clear subject + verb + object pattern that makes understanding easier.

For example:

  • Active voice: Tina hugged Jim. In this sentence, Tina (the subject) is performing the verb (hug), and Jim (the object) is receiving the action.
  • Passive voice: Jim was hugged by Tina. (This sentence can be challenging to understand by the listener and even difficult for the speaker to construct).

2. Add ‘s’ or ‘es’ for the plural form of nouns

Nouns are words used to refer to persons, animals, things, or places. For the plural form of most nouns, add “s” at the end of the word. Example, bottles and pencils. For nouns that end in x, s, ch, or s, add ‘es’ to get the plural form of the word. For example, boxes and watches. This will help you convey your message correctly.

3. For Past Tense, add -ed to Verbs

The past tense is used to describe events that have ended. This encompasses events that occur weekly, monthly, or even yearly. Add an -ed to verbs when speaking about the past to make the past tense form of the verb. Using the present tense instead of the past tense can lead to an incorrect sentence.

For example:

  • Joseph talked to his mum about getting a new job (correct)
  • Joseph talk to his mum about getting a new job (incorrect).

4. Use the Simple Present Tense should for routine events

The simple present tense is the correct tense to use when speaking about any routine actions you carry out. For example, the activities you partake in, every day should be described in the simple present tense. This entails that the primary form of the verb is used. For instance:

  • I go to work every day (correct).
  • I went to work every day (incorrect).

5. Use the Present Progressive Tense when speaking about current events

When talking about current events, you should use the present progressive tense. Add an –ing to the verb to make the present progressive tense form of the verb. For example:

  • Jonah isdrinking wine.
  • My brother iswatching a cartoon.

6. Use ‘a’ or ‘an’ in the correct context

The indefinite article ‘a’ should be used with words beginning with a consonant sound. Use the indefinite article ‘an’ with words starting with a vowel sound. For example:

  • A boy, a girl, a school
  • An ant, an endeavor, an umbrella.

To Wrap Up

Grammar is essential in improving communication skills. Speaking proper grammar encompasses the use of correct tenses, subject-verb agreement, and correct verb use, which have been highlighted in this article.

A basic understanding of grammar and sentence formation will help you craft correct sentences and communicate your thoughts properly.

Pam is an expert grammarian with years of experience teaching English, writing and ESL Grammar courses at the university level. She is enamored with all things language and fascinated with how we use words to shape our world.

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