Subject verb agreement is one of the most important aspects of writing clear and effective sentences, and can greatly impact the overall quality of your writing. One common issue that arises when it comes to subject verb agreement is intervening phrases. These phrases, which often appear between the subject and the verb in a sentence, can make it difficult to determine the appropriate verb tense to use. To help improve your writing, it`s important to understand how intervening phrases affect subject verb agreement and to practice using them correctly.
To start, let`s define what we mean by “intervening phrases.” These are phrases that appear between the subject and the verb in a sentence. They can be adjectives, adverbs, prepositional phrases, and other types of modifiers. Consider the following examples:
1. The book, which was written by a famous author, is a bestseller.
2. The dogs, running in the park, are having fun.
3. The teacher, with years of experience, knows how to handle difficult students.
In each of these sentences, there is an intervening phrase between the subject and the verb. In sentence 1, the phrase “which was written by a famous author” comes between “book” and “is.” In sentence 2, the phrase “running in the park” comes between “dogs” and “are.” In sentence 3, the phrase “with years of experience” comes between “teacher” and “knows.”
So, what impact do these intervening phrases have on subject verb agreement? In most cases, the subject of the sentence is still clear and identifiable, even with an intervening phrase. However, it`s important to make sure that the verb agrees with the subject, not the intervening phrase. Here are some examples of correct and incorrect subject verb agreement with intervening phrases:
– The book, which was written by a famous author, is a bestseller.
– The dogs, running in the park, are having fun.
– The teacher, with years of experience, knows how to handle difficult students.
– The book, which was written by a famous author, are a bestseller. (incorrect verb agreement with “book”)
– The dogs, running in the park, is having fun. (incorrect verb agreement with “dogs”)
– The teacher, with years of experience, know how to handle difficult students. (incorrect verb agreement with “teacher”)
To practice using intervening phrases correctly, you can use worksheets that focus on subject verb agreement. These worksheets will include sentences with intervening phrases and ask you to identify the correct verb tense to use. Here is an example of a sentence with an intervening phrase, followed by questions to practice subject verb agreement:
Sentence: The students, who were struggling to understand the concept, ________________ (need/needs) extra help.
1. What is the subject of the sentence?
2. What is the intervening phrase?
3. Is the correct verb tense “need” or “needs”?
4. Write the correct sentence with the appropriate verb tense.
By practicing with worksheets like these, you can improve your ability to use intervening phrases correctly in your writing and ensure that your subject verb agreement is always accurate. Remember that subject verb agreement is essential for creating clear and effective sentences, and that intervening phrases can make it more challenging, but ultimately, it`s worth the effort to master this aspect of writing.