Lessons & Classroom Games for Teachers
This lesson on three common pronouns (reflexive, personal, and indefinite) has definitions and examples to help you!
A quick refresher: Pronouns are words that take the place of nouns. They are one of the eight parts of speech.
You will have an easy time spotting these because the all end in either "self" or "selves."
Some examples include:
myself, yourself, himself, herself, itself, ourselves, yourself, themselves
They have a very specific job in the sentence. They refer to the subject of the sentence.
Maria baked herself a cake.
Herself is referring back to the subject of the sentence, which is "Maria." In other words, you could write that sentences as, "Maria baked Maria a cake." But that sounds very wordy and strange, so thank goodness we have reflexive pronouns!
Hands down, these are the most commonly used pronouns.
Here they are:
I, me, we, us, you, she, her, he, him, it, they, them
We can categorize these depending on their person, number, and gender.
"Person" refers to the person being talked about. There are three possibilities. First person refers to the person who is talking (I, me, we, us), second person refers to the person being talked to (you), and third person refers to a person who is being talked about (she, her, he, him, it, they, them.)
"Number" refers to whether it is singular (referring to one person) or plural (referring to two or more people.)
Singular = I, me, you, she, her, he, him, it
Plural = we, us, you, they, them
"Gender" refers to either masculine (he, him), feminine (she, her), or neuter (I, me, we, us, you, it, they, them.)
The prefix "in" means "not." So, these are "not definite," which is a good way to describe them because they don't refer to a specific person or thing.
Here are some examples:
everything, each, one, anything, both, some, few, many, all, most
One instance when we use these is when we don't know whom we are referring to.
For example, if someone stole your car, you probably don't know who did it, and you would say something like:
Someone stole my car!
You would probably also interject a few curse words into that sentence, but we'll avoid them for the sake of this article.
At any rate, since we don't know who stole the car, we have to use one of these to refer to this no-good person.
Now you know all about reflexive, personal, and indefinite pronouns!
Elizabeth O'Brien invites you to learn more about English grammar at her website http://www.english-grammar-revolution.com
You'll find lists of the English parts of speech as well as lessons and exercises to help you learn or teach proper grammar.
Check it out! http://www.english-grammar-revolution.com