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.
|My pencil||is||next to||my book.|
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:
|My pencil||is||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 practice 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, or describe, a noun or a verb. In this sentence, NOISE is the noun and the preposition, NEXT, links the noise to the object of a 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 what Pip did, and the prepositional phrase, ‘under the blanket’, answers the question of 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 on the bed and shouted Koko's name. What prepositional phrase do you see in this sentence? ‘On the bed' is a prepositional phrase. What question does it answer? Where Pip hopped to. What is the preposition? On. 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, or describe, a noun or a verb. 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. "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
We can use a prepostional phrase to answer the question: Where is the teddy bear?
The teddy bear is in Koko's hand.
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, where or how 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 sentence using a prepositional phrase?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. This phrase uses a comma because it begins with the prepositional phrase. We are answering the question: When did she try to scream?
2) He poured the milk after he got the glass. This prepositional phrase is answering the question: When did he pour the milk?
3) He was so tired, but he ran up the stairs to go to bed. This prepositional phrase is answering the question: Where did he run?
4) Her mom told her to put the toy back on the shelf because she wouldn't buy it. This prepositional phrase is answering the question: Where did she put the toy?
What does the prepositional phrase modify?Hints
- First, find the prepositional phrase.
- Next, find the word that is modified by the prepositional phrase and figure out if the word is a noun or a verb.
- A noun is a person, place or thing. Ex: book, park, girl
- A verb describes action. Ex: dance, talk, jump
Pip was so scared, he hid under the blanket.
In the sentence above we know that hid is the word being modified because it is describing where Pip has hidden. Where has Pip hidden? Under the blanket. Because we know our parts of speech, we know that hid is a VERB.
Pip heard a scary noise next to his bed.
In the sentence above we know that noise is the word being modified because it is describing where the noise is coming from. Where is the noise coming from? Next to Pip's bed. Because we know our parts of speech, we know that noise is a NOUN.
Can you identify the prepositional phrases in these sentences?Hints
In the image below we see that the prepositional phrase is: "NEXT TO HIS BED"
- Next to is the preposition and bed is the object.
- We are answering the question: Where is the noise coming from? The noise is next to his bed.
Remember that a prepositional phrase begins with a preposition (next to, behind, under, etc.) and ends with the object of that preposition.
There are three prepositional phrases in all.Solution
Pip jumped over the ferocious beast and ran down the steps! There are two prepositional phrases in this sentence.
- Prepositional Phrase 1 answers the question where did Pip jump? He jumped over the ferocious beast, which would be our first highlighted text.
- Prepositional Phrase 2 answers the question where did he run? He ran down the steps, which would be our second highlighted text.
- Prepositional Phrase 1 answers the question: Where did Pip hop? He hopped on the bed, which would be our highlighted text.
What is happening in the image?Hints
Find the prepositional phrases within the sentence- this might start with into, over or on.
Use the image to help you figure out what the sentence should say.
Remember that some prepositional phrases begin with prepositions and end with objects.
For example: Grandma sits in the chair. The chair is the object of the prepositional phrase. Where is Grandma? Sitting in the chair.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 "on her bed" answers the question.
2) They looked into the cave. We are answering the question: Where are they looking? The prepositional phrase "into the cave" answers the question.
3) The seagull flies over the beach. We are answering the question: Where does the seagull fly? The prepositional phrase "over the beach" answers the question.
How does this story end?Hints
Read the prepositional phrase with the sentence. Does it make sense or do you need to change it? Use the picture to help.
The phrases must indicate WHEN, HOW, or WHERE. Be sure that the prepositional phrase you chose answers one of these questions about the sentence they are in.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.