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Big English Mistake

Popularity 2Viewed 2454 times 2019-6-9 08:26 |System category:News

I've taught nearly 5,000 classes since I arrived in China in 2011. I've had several thousand students that range in age from 5 years old to 80 years old. I've taught numerous students who are now studying at top universities in America, Canada and Australia. I've trained 350 Chinese English teachers for 12 hours a weekend for 6 weeks in Henan and in Sichuan. I've taught many more Chinese teachers in weekly classes. I've even written a book about learning English.

There are two very common mistakes that Chinese English students often make that are quite easy to fix. They both involve the letter 'S'.

First, students forget to use the letter 'S' for plurals. When you change a common noun into a plural, you simply add the letter 'S' or in some cases, 'es', in order to show that there are two or more. It is a very simple rule that even a primary student can learn.

Second, the third person singular pronouns, 'he, she, it' (as well as proper names) often require the letter 'S' at the end of the verb. There are exceptions (as there are in nearly every aspect of English grammar), however, this is the common rule. Example: he does, she runs, it walks.... This is not the case with all other forms. Example: I do, I run, I walk, we walk, they walk, we run, they run.......

I review and correct dozens of essays for TOEFL, IELTS and SAT candidates each week. This is by far the most common mistake I see that Chinese English students make. Correct the 'S' problem and you'll improve your accuracy in writing and speaking a lot.

(Opinions of the writer in this blog don't represent those of China Daily.)




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Comment Comment (2 comments)

Reply Report SEARU 2019-6-13 09:03
Thanks for your instruction that is helpful for English learners! But have you made a mistake in the essay?
About " I've had several thousand students ......":
           “ I've had several thousands students ” or
          “ I've had several-thousand students ”
You are also a bit careless on grammar! (Kidding!)
Reply Report MichaelM 2019-6-13 12:49
SEARU: Thanks for your instruction that is helpful for English learners! But have you made a mistake in the essay?
About " I've had several thousand stu ...
No. I wrote it right. Both of your suggestions contain wrong grammar.

Thanks for your failed attempts at correcting my grammar. However, I think you should spare further advice on my grammar until you learn English grammar yourself.

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Michael is the author of the transformational book, Powerful Attitudes. He is a professional educator, an educational consultant, an author. He lives in Zhengzhou, Henan Province. He enjoys playing guitar and writing poetry. He loves China.


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