5 Tips for Using Its and It’s From Language Lady

For optimal viewing on a mobile device, tilt your device to landscape mode.

5 Tips for Using Its and It’s

#1

 

Its Is a Pronoun That Shows Possession.

Possessive pronouns are pronouns that show ownership of something: The dog lost its collar. (Pronouns are FOR-nouns…IT is used FOR (in place of) a noun….noun is dog; pronoun is it).

There are many pronouns that show possession. We call these possessive pronouns. Some of these include hers, his, ours, theirs, its.

#2

 

Pronouns Do Not Use Apostrophes to Show Possession.

Generally speaking, we do not show possession to pronouns with apostrophes. We do not write her’s or our’s–and we do not write it’s when we want to say its.

If we remember this first rule of thumb, it will help us in showing possession to pronouns. Nouns DO use apostrophes to show possession (dog—dog’s). Pronouns do NOT use apostrophes to show possession (it—its).

#3

 

When We Use an Apostrophe With a Pronoun, We Nearly Always Create a Contraction.

A contraction is two words squeezed together with a letter or letters squeezed completely out (and the apostrophe put in place of the “squeezed out” letters). She’s says she is or she was. He’s says he is or he was. It’s says it is or it was.

The best rule of thumb for not using its when you want it’s or it’s when you want its is to always say a contraction uncontracted (silently or aloud) when the confusing word comes up. When you write it’s, say IT IS and ask yourself if that is what you really want in that sentence. This rule of thumb works for ALL contractions all the time!

#4

 

It’s Is a Contraction That Means It Is.

Using the “say it uncontracted” rule of thumb, we will always know that it’s stands for it is. It is a pronoun. Is happens to be a being verb. We use it’s when we want to say it is.

When we are writing, we can say the contraction aloud to see if that is the word or words we want: The dog lost ITS collar. (Yes!) The dog lost IT IS collar (it’s–NO!).

#5

 

It’s Can Also Mean It Has in Informal Settings.

Some people use it’s for it has. This still consists of the pronoun it with the being verb has.

The same rule of thumb applies: Say contractions “uncontracted” as you write them to be sure you have the correct word.

Thanks for Joining Donna to Learn About Grammar and Writing!

Check Out Other “5 Tips From Language Lady” slideshows!

5 Places to Find Language Lady/Donna Reish Teaching Grammar and Writing

Proofreaders’ Marks: Comical Ones and Accurate Ones! (Printable Included!)

 

Proofreaders’ Marks Comical Ones and Accurate Ones! (Printable Included!)

With school just around the corner (don’t you love the smell of those new binders???), I thought I would offer some printables that can help you in your school prep. One of the things I have each of my writing students be sure they have in their binders is a copy of my Proofreaders’ Marks page. I edit their papers with these proofreaders’ marks, and I want them to have the “cheat sheet” to refer to and learn from right at their fingertips. Students as young as third grade can learn the first few/basic ones. They will learn more and more of them as they write and as you edit their papers using these simple marks.

(more…)

[Video] How To Use the Preposition Practice Packet

Video: How to Use the Preposition Practice Packet

In this Wondering Wednesday video, Donna Reish (author of seventy curriculum books) teaches parents how to teach propositions with meaning. Using her downloadable e-book, the Preposition Practice Packet, Donna explains the importance of understanding what prepositions do in order to memorize many of the over 200 prepositions out there.

(more…)

Don’t Scratch Your Itch!

Don't Scratch Your Itch!

Okay, Reish boys–and anybody else in my virtual world who has non-virtual poison ivy right now!

1. Itch

a. A noun that indicates a place on the body that is irritated, such as a spot of poison ivy that is bothersome

b. A verb that happens to a part of the body: my poison ivy itches (meaning it feels like it needs scratched)

(more…)

A Writing Tip for Seventh Grade

A Writing Tip for Every Year - Seventh Grade

Seventh Grade: Teach your student to apply his grammar learning to writing.

While my students often groan when they are told to mark the Checklist Challenge for that week’s homework assignment, they know (and I know) that it really does help. A student just told me this week that her sister had her scan and email her a copy of her Checklist Challenge to use in college—because she had used our CC for every writing project and knew how helpful it can be in revising writing…..

Click here to read more→

Pin It on Pinterest