English Notes

Structure: Prepositional Phrase, The Use of Dictionary and Rules of Concord

Structure: Prepositional Phrase

Content: Definition, Examples

A prepositional phrase is a group of words, which begins with a preposition and ends with a noun pronoun or noun phrase called its complement.


  1. Preposition + Noun
    • He is in trouble.
    • Trust in me.
  2. Preposition + Pronoun 
    • Please, bear with me.
    • Go after them.
  3. Preposition + Noun Phrase
    • She is always yelling at the girls.
    • We are at the farm.

Other Types

  1. Preposition + Wh clause e.g. He was surprised at what she told his friend.
  2. Preposition + ing clause e.g. He needs a truck for transporting gravel.

Grammatical Functions

A prepositional phrase can serve as a modifier (an adjective), an adverb or a complement of a verb or complement of an adjective.

  1. Modifier (adjective)

 The man with a hat is our teacher.

(modifies the noun “man”)

  1. Modifier (adverb)

The police caught the thief in the garden.

(modifies the verb ‘caught’)

  1. Complement of a verb

We believe in what you said.

(Complement of the verb “believe”)

  1. Complement of an adective

We are sure of his chances.

(complements sure)



Using examples to show the grammatical functions of prepositional phrases.

READING Assignment

Read Countdown page 215 – 216

  • Topic: The Use of the Dictionary, Page 129

Content: Definition, Structure Dictionary work

A dictionary is a book that gives a list of the words of a language in alphabetical order and explains what they mean or gives a word for them in a foreign language:e.g a FrenchEnglish dictionary.

A common dictionary typically has following structure.

  • Word entry i.e the word to be explained is written showing  its breakdown into syllables e.g. dic-tion-ary
    • Transcription: the word is transcribed using phonetic symbols in order  to show how it should be pronounced e.g. dictionary/ dikʃƏnri/
    • The stress is indicated through the placement of a mark beside the top of the symbol which begins the syllable which carries the primary stress. It is placed at the bottom of the symbol which begins the syllable which carries the secondary stress / dikʃƏnri/
    • The word class is also entered e.g. different /difƏrenʃI/ noun, adjective.This shows the word can be used as a noun or as an adjective .

The use of numbering e.g. 1,2,3 shows the various levels of meaning into which a word can be put. e,g. the word “difficult” can mean.

  • not easy
    • full of problems
    • (people) not easy to please
    • The variety of (Br E) British English, North American English (N.A.M.E) or Zealand English (NZE)can be  written beside a word.
    • Other pieces of information which are used to explain a word include:

Pl =  Plural

C =  Countable

U = Uncountable

Syn = Synonym

Ant = Antonym

Idm = Idiom

Fig = Figurative language

Tech = technical usage

Opp = opposite

PHRV = Phrasal verb

Sth=  Something


Use a standard dictionary to do the class work on page 129- 130


Main text page 129 – 130

Grammar: Rules of Concord


Concord is the agreement of the subject with the verb in a sentence


  1. When the subject is in the third person and singular, the verb in the present takes ‘s’ or ‘-es’ e.g. Monica listens attentively.
  2. When the subject is in the first person, second person and third person plural number, the base form (i.e. plural verb is used.) e.g.

We go to church every Sunday,

You brush your teeth every morning.

They/the children make a lot of noise in school.

  • In a noun phrase, the verb must agree with the head word i.e. main word e.g.

One of my students has travelled abroad.

Everyone of the pupils was rewarded.

  • Two or more singular nouns, connected by ‘and’ expressing the same person/idea/thing must take a singular verb. E.g.

Rice and beans is my best food.

The long and short of the matter is that we must work

My friend and teacherhas made my dream come true.          

  • Two or more nouns connected by ‘and’ but referring to different things must go with a plural verb.

My friend and my brother have arrived.

  • A group of words starting with ‘each’ or ‘every’, ‘either’ or ‘neither’ should take a singular verb.

Every man and woman has his own destiny.

Each student was asked to pay some fee.

Neither Tolu nor Teni pays attention to instructions.

Either Tiler or Tony has done the needful.

  • If one of the two nouns connected by ‘nor’, ‘or’ is plural, or differ in person, the verb agrees with the closest noun to the verb in a sentence.

Either Temi or her sistersare interested in novels.

Neither the Principal nor the teachershavecome to school.

Either my brother or Iam travelling next week.

Neither you nor Victoria has paid the required due.

  • Indefinite pronouns and nouns ending with ‘s’ but singular in meaning must take singular verbs.

Everybody is here.                              Everything is all right.

Everyone has spoken.                         Nothinghas happened.

Politicsis a dirty game in Nigeria.

The news is broadcast at 6pm.


Identify five guiding rules of subject – verb agreement and write two examples for each.


Pg 230. Countdown English

Comprehension: Bullying (pg 84, Countdown English)


This is a comprehension passage on bullying. It explains how it is done amongst children and the behaviour of children who are bullied. This will also help you to know whether you are involved in it.


Read the passage and answer the questions on it.


Pg 84, Countdown English


Use an appropriate form of the verbs (go, be, have) in the sentence below.

  1. Biola, with her children ___________ to church every Sunday
  2. Many a student ___________ confused on how to study.
  3. Measles ____________ a common children disease.
  4. The basics of English __________ required for its effective use.
  5. Either he or you ___________ abused the process.
  6. Deji, as well as his brother ____________ travelled to the US.


A. Tests for Continuous Assessment, No A, pg 194 of Effective English 2

B. Section A,Continuous for Assessment unit 9 no 1-5

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