Huia 1 Style Guide

On this page, you will find spelling, grammar, punctuation and vocabulary rules or guidelines we have covered in class. 

We will try to keep entries alphabetical, so you may need to scroll down if you are looking for something in particular

Sometimes, there could be more than one acceptable way of spelling, saying,  or punctuating something in English.  We have decided that the following best suit us in Huia 1, New Zealand.

Feel free to challenge, question, advise, disagree, point out errors,  or just comment. 

Free Rice is a fun site to  help learn and practise vocabulary. If you get words right, the words get harder; if you get words wrong, they get easier.

A lot is always two words, and it means many, much or large amount.   Do not get it confused with to allot which means to share out. Also allotted (past tense) and allotment (noun).
We had a lot of homework. 
I like that a lot
The monitors were allotted their jobs for the day.  
We received our allotment of tickets to sell.
All right is always two words, although alright is recognised as being incorrect so often, that it's almost become acceptable. Remember: All right is always all right.
Ask if it's all right if I come to your house after school.
I got my basic fasts all right
All right, I'll let you stay up late.
 A way to tell the difference between desert and desert (and dessert).
  •  dessert (noun) (say diz-ert) fruit or sweet food as the last course of a meal [from French desservir = clear the table] A way to remember that this dessert has two ss is to think that it would be nice to have a second helping of dessert, so it will be nice to have a second s . . . Get it? One s for each helping of dessert.
  •  desert (verb) (say diz-ert) to abandon or leave without intending to return. A way to remember this is to think that one s deserted the dessert . . . Get it? One s decides to leave the dessert and never comes back.
  • desert (noun) (say dez-ert) a large area of dry, often sandy land. A way to remember this is to think that there is usually sand in a desert. One s for sand - one s for desert.
  • deserts (abstract plural noun) (say diz-erts)what a person deserves. He got his just deserts. A way to remember this could be that he did something wrong - perhaps deserted his post? So he didn't deserve an extra s. You can also think - if he got what he deserved, he got his deserts. Get it?
Words  ending  in -gue where only the g in pronounced (as in log):
harangue, meringue, tongue, analogue, league, intrigue, morgue,  prologue, epilogue, monologue, dialogue, synagogue, brogue, fatigue, rogue, vogue,  catalogue, plague, vague.
I is a subjective pronoun. I, we, you, he, she, and they are all subjective pronouns. They are used when they are the subject of a verb.
Jerry and I went to school.  (verb - went)
John and I shared our lunch. (verb - shared) 
I'm sorry that Emma and I left your computer on the bus.  (verb - left) 
We tried to find the way, but Susan and I took the wrong path. (verb - took)
When in doubt, leave out the other person, and hear what it sounds like:
(Jerry and) I went to school.
(John and) I shared ...
(Emma and) I left ...
(Susan and I) took ...
 Me is an objective pronoun. Me, us, you, him, her, and they are all objective pronouns. They are used when they are object of a verb or preposition.
Aaron and Jonothan chased Caleb and me around the yard. (verb - chased)
The teacher thanked Alisha and me for tidying her desk. (verb - thanked)
John went to school with Jerry and me. (preposition - with)
Jerry shared his his lunch with John and me. (preposition - with)
Andrew lent his computer to Emma and me. (preposition - to)
Sally gave directions to Susan and me. (preposition - to) 
When in doubt, leave out the other person, and hear what it sounds like:
Aaron and Jonothan chased (Caleb and) me...
The teacher thanked (Alisha and) me ...
John went to school with (Jerry and) me.
Jerry shared his his lunch with (John and) me.
Andrewe  lent his computer to (Emma and) me. 
Sally gave directions to (Susan and) me.
Passed is a verb - the past tense of the verb to pass. To check, try saying it in the present tense, eg I pass my exam. The horse passes the finishing post. If you can do this, then it is a verb.   
         I have passed my exam.
        The horse passed the finishing post first.
        Aaron passed the note to Michael.
        The yoghurt has passed its use-by date.

Past can be a noun, adjective, adverb or proposition depending on how it is used in a sentence. 
        In the past, we used text books for maths. (noun)
        He told his grand children stories about his past.
        Check: if it has 'in the'  or a person's name, or a pronoun in front of past, it is    
        most likely a noun. 
        He was given an award for his past support of the team. (adjective)
        He had many past failures before he achieved success. (adjective)
        Check: if you can take 'past' out of the sentence and it still makes sense, and if           'past' is in front of a noun, it is most likely an adjective. 
        The car raced past. (adverb)
        A swarm of bees flew past. (adverb) 
        Check: if 'past' follows a verb, and if it ends a statement which could be a        
        complete sentence, then it is most likely an adverb.
        It is half past three.(preposition)
        My house is just past the town hall. (preposition)
        Check: if 'past' shows where one thing is in relation to another, it is most   
        likely  a preposition.

Practise always uses an s when it is used as a verb in UK and NZ English: 
I practise the piano
They like to practise their soccer skills every day. 
James practises  forming his letters correctly. 
If you are added -ed or - ing , it will always be spelt with s: practised, practising 
You will often find any form of practise with an s underlined in red on any writing on the computer when you are using UK or possibly Australian spelling tools. 
I practised the piano.
They are practising their soccer skills. 
In UK and NZ English  practice only uses a c when it is used as a noun or adjective. Note, the plural will be practices.  To check,  try putting  a  or the in front of practice with a c.  
We have choir practice this afternoon.
There will be four more practices before the show. 
Here are some more practice exercises.

Any compound word beginning with self- is always hyphenated: 
self-conscious  note - unselfconscious
 Use a semicolon before however,  and a comma after however in these situations:
I am excited about the holidays; however, I don't know what I am going to do.
We are going to have an Anzac assembly; however, we still need to practise  the songs.
I am bad at sports; however, I scored a goal at soccer.
Our team played very well at ultra-rip; however, we did not win the tournament.
She tired to shoot goals; however, she just missed.
I love sport; however, I always get hit by the ball. I have to do a speech; however, I don't know what to say.
In all the above examples, however  is used as a conjunctive adverb. (Don't worry too much about that at this stage.)  Each statement  either side of however needs to be able to stand alone as a  complete sentence. Check the sentences above for this. 

Your, you're and yours:
You're: you are, e.g.,  you are late you're late  
Your : belonging to you, e.g., your book = the book belonging to you
Yours never ever has an apostrophe.NEVER EVER Your's


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