What is a preposition, and how do I remember what they are?
Does your child come home from school fresh from an English lesson and ask you to help with their homework? “Sure,” you say, “of course I’ll help.” And the next thing you know, they’re firing off grammar vocabulary that you’ve never even heard of, let alone know how to use!
Fronted adverbials? Embedded subordinate clauses? And this is only primary school!
Well we’re here to help! Today’s grammar gremlin: Prepositions
A preposition is a word that is usually in front (pre) of nouns or pronouns to show their relationship (position) to other words in the sentence. They can describe:
- The position: Her bag was under the table. The dog ran between the trees
- The time: They arrived on Sunday. They arrived after 10 o’clock
- The way in which something is done: We went by car. We walked without speaking
Simple prepositions consist of one word eg: on, over, behind, in. Some can be made up of more than one word eg: next to, because of, on top.
You can remember what a preposition does because the clue is in the word: preposition. So if it gives information about an item or person’s position or movement, it’s a preposition.
The Prepositions Parrot game in SPaG Monsters is perfect to help your child revise this element of grammar. The game gets players to memorise the parrot’s positions in a sequence, this reinforces which words are prepositions and their meanings!