Identifying Prepositional Phrases
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Basics on the topic Identifying Prepositional Phrases
Why are prepositional phrases important? Imagine you want to describe where something is in a room. In order to do that, you will need a preposition. Let’s say you want to tell a friend where your pencil is.
Since it is not enough to just tell your friend that your pencil “is next to…”. They would simply not know where to look. So you need to add an object (“my book”).
Prepositional Phrases – Definition
What is a prepositional phrase? Prepositional phrases are a group of words that begin with a preposition and end with the object of the preposition. A prepositional phrase can modify, or describe, a noun or a verb.
Prepositional Phrases – Example
What is an example for a prepositional phrase? If we look at the example from earlier, we can see that the prepositional phrase in that sentence looks like this:
|next to my book.
Let’s have a look at another example from the video on prepositional phrases. The sentence here is “Pip heard a scary noise next to his bed”. Let’s have a look at the sentence structure.
This prepositional phrase, “next to his bed”, modifies the noun, “noise”, and tells us where the noise came from. Let’s look at another sentence to consolidate prepositional phrases and their structures.
This prepositional phrase, “under the blanket”, modifies the verb, “hid”, and tells us where Pip hid.
Prepositional Phrases – Summary
Remember; prepositional phrases are the part of a sentence that tells the reader where something happens or where something is located. Prepositional phrases are always comprised of a preposition at the start of the phrase together with the object at the end of the prepositional phrase.
Following the video you can find additional interactive exercises on how to identify a prepositional phrase along with worksheets and other activities to practise and test your knowledge.
Transcript Identifying Prepositional Phrases
Identifying prepositional phrases “There’s a monster in my room!” “What? What is going on?” “There’s a monster in my room! And he was trying to get me!” “Ok start from the beginning and tell me step by step what happened.” Pip will describe the events to Koko using prepositional phrases. Prepositional phrases add more details to our sentences by giving additional information that specifies when, where or how something happened. Let's hear Pip's story. Pip heard a scary noise next to his bed! In this sentence, 'Pip heard a scary noise next to his bed', ‘next to his bed', is the prepositional phrase. Prepositional phrases are a group of words that begin with a preposition and end with the object of the preposition. A prepositional phrase can modify nouns and verbs, they can also act as adjectives and adverbs. When they are at the start of a sentence we may call them fronted adverbials. In this sentence, ‘noise’, is the noun and the preposition, ‘next’, links the noise to the object of the preposition, which is the bed. Pip was so scared, he hid under the blanket! In this sentence,' Pip was so scared, he hid under the blanket,' the prepositional phrase is giving additional information about the verb. The verb, ‘hid’ tells us what Pip did and the prepositional phrase, ‘under the blanket’, tells us where he hid. Here the preposition is ‘under' and links his hiding to the object of the preposition, which is the blanket. ‘After he saw the monster, he tried to scream’. Look at this sentence. What did Pip do here? He tried to scream. When did he try to do that? After he saw the monster. In this sentence, the preposition comes at the beginning! The preposition, 'after', links 'seeing the monster' to the scream. Notice that when a prepositional phrase starts a sentence, we put a comma between the phrase and the remainder of the sentence. ‘Pip jumped over the ferocious beast and ran down the steps!’ What prepositional phrases do you see in this sentence? ‘Over the ferocious beast’ is a prepositional phrase that answers where he jumped and 'down the steps’ is also a phrase that shows where he ran. Compound sentences like this have more than one prepositional phrase. ‘Pip hopped onto the bed and shouted Koko's name’. What prepositional phrase do you see in this sentence? ‘Onto the bed' is a prepositional phrase. What question does it answer? Where Pip hopped. What is the preposition? ‘Onto’. What is the object of the preposition here? ‘The bed’. As Koko settles Pip back to his bed, let's review. Remember, prepositional phrases add more details to our sentences giving additional information that specifies when, where or how something happened. Prepositional phrases are a group of words that begin with a preposition and end with the object of the preposition. A prepositional phrase can modify a noun or a verb, it can act as an adverb or as an adjective. A prepositional phrase can be found anywhere in a sentence. When a sentence starts with a prepositional phrase, we put a comma between the phrase and the remainder of the sentence. We would often call a prepositional phrase a fronted adverbial when it is at the beginning of a sentence. "See Pip! Everything is fine it was your imagination." "Good night!" "Good night, Koko!" "Good night, Koko!"
Identifying Prepositional Phrases exercise
What do prepositional phrases tell us?Hints
The teddy bear is in Koko's hand. In this sentence, the prepositional phrase tell us where the teddy bear is.
Other prepositions that can be used to start prepostional phrases include: next to, behind, under, and beside.Solution
The correct answer was: Details about when or where something happened. ✅
Prepositions modify nouns and verbs, so they tell us important details that we would not know without a prepositional phrase.
For example: Pip heard a scary noise next to his bed. Notice that without the prepositional phrase, next to his bed, we wouldn't know where the noise was coming from.
Can you complete the sentences with prepositional phrases?Hints
Remember that a prepositional phrase can come before or after the noun or verb that it is modifying.
Do the two parts of the sentence make sense when joined together?Solution
1) After Koko saw the monster, she tried to scream. The prepositional phrase tell us when she tried to scream.
2) He poured the milk after he got the glass. The prepositional phrase tell us when he poured the milk.
3) He was so tired, he crawled upstairs to bed. The prepositional phrase tell us where he crawled.
4) Her mum told her to put the toy back on the shelf. The prepositional phrase tell us where she put the toy.
What is happening in the image?Hints
Find the preposition within the sentence; this might start with into, over or on.
Which other words can go with the preposition to create a prepositional phrase?
Use the word with a capital letter to start the sentence and make sure the full stop is at the end.Solution
All of the pictures are modifing a verb. They use prepositional phrases to describe the location of the main character or the action they are completing.
1) She sits on her bed.
We are answering the question: Where does she sit?
The prepositional phrase is: "on her bed".
2) They looked into the cave.
We are answering the question: Where are they looking?
The prepositional phrase is: "into the cave".
3) The seagull flies over the beach.
We are answering the question: Where does the seagull fly?
The prepositional phrase is: "over the beach".
Can you identify the prepositional phrases in these sentences?Hints
The prepositional phrase starts with a preposition.
The prepositional phrases in these sentences all start with a preposition giving additional information for 'where'.
There are three prepositional phrases to find.Solution
- Pip jumped over the ferocious beast and ran down the steps!
- Pip hopped on the bed and shouted Koko's name.
- Pip jumped over the ferocious beast and ran down the steps!
What does the prepositional phrase tell us?Hints
First, find the prepositional phrase. This is the phrase that starts with a preposition.
Think, is the preposition giving additional information about when or where?Solution
Pip heard a scary noise next to his bed. This sentence tell us where Pip heard the scary noise.
Pip kept is eyes closed throughout the night. This sentence tell us when Pip kept his eyes closed.
How does this story end?Hints
Read the prepositional phrase with the sentence. Does it make sense? Use the pictures to help.
Think about where the actions are happening.Solution
1) It was the night of the big talent show and Mr. Squeaks was feeling nervous. He stood in front of the mirror as he got ready.
Suddenly, his friend Imani flew into his dressing room with a worried look on their face. Imani had just learned that Fox was going to perform the same magic trick as Mr. Squeaks!
Imani came as soon as they found out, but wasn't quick enough. Fox was walking onto the stage and Mr. Squeaks was up next!
2) Nico and Nia were the best of friends. Today was an especially sunny day so they decided to relax. They sat in the hammock and started to make up stories.
Their first story was about a mouse who found a gigantic piece of cheese that was inside of an old suitcase.
Their second story was about a banana that was so big its peel covered the entire sun. They shared many stories and laughed a lot, but pretty soon the sun started to set, so they fell asleep as the moonlight shone down on them.
Above, Below & Beside
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