About Prepositional Phrases and How to Use Them

First, let’s revisit what a preposition is.

A preposition is a word (or group of words) used before an object (a noun, pronoun, or noun phrase) to show direction, time, place, location, spatial relationships, or to introduce an object.

For example: in, at, on, of, to

What is a prepositional phrase?

At the minimum, a prepositional phrase will begin with a preposition and end with the object of the preposition.

For example:

At home

At = preposition, home=noun

About what we need

About = preposition, what we need = noun clause

Most prepositional phrases, however, are longer.

For example:

From my mother

From = preposition, my = modifier, mother = noun

Under the warm blanket

Under = preposition, the warm = modifier, blanket = noun

What do prepositional phrases do in a sentence?

Prepositional phrases function as either an adjective or an adverb in a sentence.

As an adjective, the prepositional phrase answers the question: which one?

The swimsuit on the beach chair is wet.

Which swimsuit? The one on the beach char.

As an adverb, the prepositional phrase answers the questions: How? When? Where?

We tried the sushi and tempura at Sushi Delight Bistro.

Where did you eat the sushi and tempura? At Sushi Delight Bistro.

What are some common prepositional phrases?

Here are some prepositional phrases we commonly use:

Common prepositional phrases

Prepositional phrases worksheets for grade 4 students

In our grammar section for grade 4, we have a series of worksheets to help students practice writing prepositional phrases in sentences.

Grade 4 prepositional phrase worksheets

Prepositional phrase practice for grade 5 students

For grade 5 students, we created a series of worksheets asking students to identify the prepositional phrases in sentences for time, place and both.

Grade 5 prepositional phrase worksheets