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Level 1: Lesson 3


Level 1 is the first workbook in the elementary series. Lesson 3 teaches about strong plural nouns. Strong nouns take an -s or -es suffix to form the plural.

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A Form-Function English Grammar

Level 1

Lesson 3

Strong Plural Nouns

What is a strong plural noun?

Remember again that notional grammars define the noun as a word that names a person, place, thing, or idea. Most nouns can be counted, which means most nouns have singular and plural forms.

Singular means “one.” Plural means “not one.”

For example, the word watch is a noun. You can count watches. One watch, two watches, three watches, ten watches, zero watches.

Remember that plural means “not one” because you use the plural form with zero and numbers more than one. Zero degrees. Fifty degrees. One hundred degrees. The noun degrees is plural and takes the numbers zero, fifty, and one hundred, all of which are not one.

Strong nouns are nouns that take an -s or -es suffix to form the plural.

Put an -s suffix on the end of most strong nouns to form the plural.

For example, the nouns tree, pillow, fan, and lamp all take the -s suffix in the plural. One tree, two trees. One pillow, two pillows. One fan, two fans. One lamp, two lamps.

Nouns that need an extra syllable in the plural take the -es suffix. For example, the nouns dish, beach, kiss, and tax each have one syllable in the singular. One dish, one beach, one kiss, one tax. All four nouns need an extra syllable in the plural. Two dishes, two beaches, two kisses, two taxes.

For nouns that end in the grapheme <y> (not a diagraph that contains <y>), the <y> toggles with <i> and then the -es suffix affixes to the end of the noun. For example, the nouns cherry, lily, country, and family all end in the grapheme <y>. The <y> toggles with <i> and then the noun takes the -es suffix. One cherry, two cherries. One lily, two lilies. One country, two countries. One family, two families.

So, what is a strong plural noun?

Most nouns have singular and plural forms, which means most nouns can be counted. Plural means “not one.” Strong plural nouns are nouns that take an -s or -es suffix. Now practice your knowledge of strong plural nouns by completing the exercises in Lesson 3 of A Form-Function English Grammar: Level 1, pages 12 through 15.

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