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Pronoun Agreement Mistakes Students Make

One common mistake that students make is using the wrong pronoun in sentences. The error occurs when the pronoun does not agree with a singular or plural noun.


If the noun is singular, the pronoun must be singular too. If the noun is plural, the pronoun must be plural as well.


For example:

 

Pronoun agreement


To understand the pronoun forms, it’s important to know which pronouns are singular, and which are plural:

 

Singular plural pronouns


Now that we know which pronouns are singular and which are plural, the rule is straight-forward:

 

Pronoun agreement

 

That rule extends to sentences where 1 + 1 makes 2, as in singular + singular makes plural:

 

Pronoun agreement


Ben and Raj make two boys, which is plural.


Unfortunately, English is not always straight-forward, and there are some special pronoun agreement rules we need to pay attention to.

Each and every

The words ‘each’ and ‘every’ are singular words. Any sentences that use them will treat every noun as a singular entity, so the rule is always use a singular pronoun in sentences with ‘each’ and every’.


For example:

Pronoun agreement

Either – or, neither – nor, not only – but also

Either … or, neither … nor, not only … but also are correlative conjunctions. You’ll need to pay attention to the pronoun agreement in sentences with these words. Often nouns in these sentences are mistaken for plural nouns, where they are singular nouns.

 

Pronoun agreement

 

Pronoun agreement worksheets

In our grade 4 grammar section we have a series of worksheets to practice pronoun agreement.

Pronoun agreement worksheet