Sunday, 21 August 2016

Prepositions: What are they and why should I care?

Here is another interesting suggestion from one of my friends.
Prepositions. We all know the word, but do we know the meaning and significance of it?
As school becomes a thing of the past, it can be easy to forget what each grammatical term refers to, so let’s start with this one.

What are they?

The Macquarie dictionary describes a preposition as “a word which defines the relationship between a noun (or pronoun) and some other word(s) in the sentence.”
This means the preposition is usually telling you when, how, where, etc. Without prepositions, we wouldn’t get to add detail as easily.

The dog sat
on my bed.
She walked
across the road.
We ate lunch
inside the café.

If you want a little clue to help you remember what prepositions are, think of the “positions” part of the word. Often a preposition will tell you what position the subject of the sentence is in.

Why should I care?

Well, there’s a good chance you use prepositions every time you speak and write. They are an essential part of our language, and I personally think it’s important to know as much as you can about the everyday things you do. A preposition can assist you in descriptions and in connecting words to one another. This is extremely useful in communication, both in social and professional contexts. And the more of them you know, the more versatile you can be in your word usage. Good language is impressive to many people, myself included.

Another reason to care became apparent to me through one of my friends, who is a speech pathologist.
She reminded me that many of her patients (who are kids) struggle to use prepositions. This sort of blog post, though brief, might be useful for those patients. Being able to communicate easily is something we probably all take for granted, but unfortunately it is a challenge for some. When there is a barrier preventing you from communicating properly, it must be a very frustrating and disheartening experience. So, if you have the ability to use prepositions, know what they are and use them well. Spread the knowledge. It might help someone.

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