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Basic Information

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sentence is a group of words that are put together to make one complete thought.


To understand sentence structures in the English language, you must first have a general understanding of the types of words that are used to make sentences.


Noun – a person, place, or thing

a person

a place

a thing

Singular examples (one): brother, home, sock, cat

Plural examples (more than one): brothers, homes, socks, cats

Verb – an action


Examples: jump, sit, talk, have




Adjective – describes a noun


Examples: colorful shirt, funny story, tall boy




Adverb – describes other words (not nouns)


Examples: jumped yesterday, talks fast, sings loudlyvery pretty, luckily for us

Adverbs give us more information about place, time, and so forth.

Types of Adverbs:

Where: home, here, there, outside, inside, away, around, anywhere, abroad 

When: now, sooner, later, yesterday, tomorrow, lately

How: well, hard, fast, quickly, slowly, loudly, secretly, happily

How often: always, never, sometimes, often, rarely, usually, occasionally

How much: very, highly, totally, perfectly, partially, almost, too, enough, quite, extremely

a confused woman

so weird

a happy couple

talk happily

too long

NOTE: An adverb can have more than one word.

Compare these examples:

yesterday OR the day before

there OR in the other room

outside OR at the beach

nicely OR in a nice way

Adverbs that have more that a single word are called “adverb phrases”. We use them the same way, and in this course we will call them all “adverbs”. We will do so with other parts of speech too, in order to keep things simple.

Subject – the noun or nouns that perform the action

Example: The dog jumped.

The subject of this sentence is the noun, dog, because it is performing the action of jumping.

Example: Dogs and cats sleep.

The subjects of this sentence are the nouns, dogs and cats. This is called a compound subject because there is more than one subject performing the same action.

Object – the noun or nouns that receive the action

Example: The child drank milk.

The object of this sentence is the noun, milk, because the child is drinking the milk. The milk is receiving the action.

Example: She is eating bread and cheese.

The objects of this sentence are the nouns, bread and cheese. The subject is eating them both.