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Apostrophes How and when to use them

What is an apostrophe? • It looks like a comma – ‘ – but we place it above the line of writing. • It takes up the space of a letter. • It is used for various reasons.

Why do we use them? • To show who owns what (possession) – This is Jane’s cat.

• To fill in for missing letters (contractions) – She’s gone to the cinema with her friends.

Contractions • When two words are joined together in a shorter form. • The apostrophe takes the place of the missing letter(s). – I am (I’m) – They are (They’re) – Do not (don’t)

Be careful! • Don’t confuse its and it’s – its (possessive – its edges were sharp) – it’s (it is, it has)

• Whose and who’s – Whose book is this? – Who’s coming to dinner.

Test Yourself • • • • • •

You are - ? Will not - ? I would - ? I had - ? We have - ? I shall not - ?

Test Yourself • Shes got her mothers good looks, hasnt she? • Its the princesss birthday today, isnt it? • The womens Keep Fit Class opens today.

Homework • Find some examples of the misuse of apostrophes:– many people put an apostrophe when they just need to add an ‘s’ to make a plural. – e.g. PC’s, 1940’s, CD’s

• You only use an apostrophe to show possession or that you have missed out some letters.


punctuate, punctuate

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